The decline in average family size and its implications for the average benefits of within-household sharing.

Schroeder, Carsten, Rehdanz, Katrin, Narita, Daiju and Okubo, Toshihiro (2015) The decline in average family size and its implications for the average benefits of within-household sharing. Oxford Economic Papers-New Series, 67 (3). pp. 760-780.

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Abstract

Economic policies rely on demographic projections. Yet in making these projections, researchers often ignore the aspect of household formation-despite sustained trends in many industrialized countries towards smaller household units with fewer members. Over the long term, this trend is likely to reduce the benefits of sharing goods/services within households (household economies of scale) at the micro-level, thereby increasing household-sector demand at the macro level. We propose a framework to (a) quantify the level of household economies of scale for different household types and (b) assess how the decline in average household size impacts aggregate household-sector demand. We apply the framework to energy consumption in Japan. The application indicates that household economies of scale in energy use are substantial and that the 5% decline in average household size in Japan between 2005 and 2010 led to an economy-wide loss in household economies of scale amounting to almost 4%.

Document Type: Article
Additional Information: Times Cited: 0
Research affiliation: Kiel University
Refereed: Yes
ISSN: 0030-7653
Projects: Future Ocean
Date Deposited: 18 Oct 2016 03:45
Last Modified: 01 Mar 2018 15:37
URI: http://oceanrep.geomar.de/id/eprint/32686

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