1351.0.55.022 - Research Paper: Population Ageing and the Accumulation of Human Capital in Australia, 1981-2001, Sep 2007  
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 13/09/2007  First Issue
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Population ageing is an important economic issue facing developed countries, generating many studies and debates. The analysis of population ageing and policy initiatives for addressing it requires relevant statistics. Using the experimental measurement framework for human capital developed by the Australian Bureau of Statistics this study provides a quantitative assessment of the impact of population ageing on per capita human capital for the period 1981-2001. ABS estimates show that stocks of human capital have grown significantly over this period. However, since the early 1990's, the rate of increase has declined. Our analysis suggests that population ageing has been one of the major drivers of this deceleration of growth in per capita human capital. Negative effects of ageing were of limited magnitude as they have been to some extent counterbalanced by increasing per capita investment in education and training. As population ageing continues, maintaining growth in per capita human capital is a key issue for policy makers.