Changing Population

Key Terms

Term Definition

North-South divide  /Brant Line

An increasing trend of inequality in levels of development between the North (HICs) and South (LICs)
Development gap Wealth difference between the developed and the developing
Population distribution The spatial pattern of where people live
Population density Number of people living within a given area
Millionaire city
A city with more than a million residents
Voluntary or involuntary (forced) movement of a population's place of residence. Can be internal and external (international)
Female empowerment Promoting female rights and place in the economy


Population and economic development patterns

Population Distribution factors

Factor Effect
Distance from sea Proximity - availability of seafood, marine trading routes...
Elevation Low - easy travel, trading, increased probability of factors bellow and their effects
Fertile land Higher/easier agricultural production, allowing on development in other sectors
A regular supply of freshwater Affects fertile land, river trade route, focus on other basic human needs
Temperate climate Affects fertile land, and provides a generally agreeable way of living.


Population distribution in CHINA

Facts and Figures: 

How China's Economic Growth will Change Population Distribution

Internal Migration in China

Image result for china population distribution simple


Classification of economic development and other classifications





High-Income Country

Per Capita > 12,735 (USD)


Low-Income Country

Per Capita < 1,025


Middle-Income Country

1,025 < Per Capita > 12,735


Least Developed Countries

Countries with the lowest development indicators


Newly Industrializing Countries

Rapid industrial grows since the ‘60s


Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries

Represents the interest of some oil-exporting companies.


Group of Seven/Eight

Group of the wealthiest countries: Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, UK, USA + Russia (suspended)

G10/  Paris Club

Group of Ten

Wealthiest members of the IMF (International Monetary Fund)


Mexico, Indonesia, Nigeria, Turkey

Large population emerging economies.


World Bank Classifications

Classification (income) Gross National Income (GNI) per capita in USD
Low >1,025
Lower-middle 1,026<4,035
Higher-middle 4,036<12,475
Higher 12,475<


Economic Growth

Economic growth is the increase in real GDP or GDP per capita.

Direct factors:

Indirect factors:


The Core-Periphery Model

Cores Develope because...

High Value-added products require:


Semi Periphery Cores Develope because...




Changing population and place


Population Pyramids

Dependency Ratio =DependantWorking=Youth×ElderlyAdults

Demographic Transition Model


Population Measurements

Term Definition
Natural Increase Birth Rate - Death Rate (when B.R.>D.R.)
Natural Decrease Death Rate - Birth Rate (when D.R.>B.R.)
Natural Change Natural Increase or Decrease (change)
Population Change The change in the number of people living in a country (Incl. Birth Rate, Death Rate, and Migration)
Doubling Time Number of years it takes for a population to double in size      70 (years) / Natural Increase (%)
Population Momentum
The tendency of a population continuing growth despite dropping birth rates, due to a comparatively low death rate
Population Projections
Predictions about future populations based on fertility, mortality, and migration

Make sure you learn these because they are important for your exam.


Fertility Rate

Total Fertility Rate (TFR) - the average amount of births per 1000 women of childbearing age.

Factors affecting the TFR

Factor Description
The status of women This umbrella term is assessed by the Gender-related Development Index (GDI), which measures the inequality trough: life expectancy, education, and standard of living.
Level of education In general, the higher the level of education the fewer children a family will have.
Aspirations and income
Due to the cost of bringing up a child, families with high aspirations tend to have fewer children to achieve a higher standard of living.
Access to contraception
If women have access to the contraception they are much less likely to have children.
Location of residence Families tend to be smaller in urban areas than in rural ones due to stronger social pressures, greater freedom, and less state control, fewer educational and economic opportunities, and older population.
Religion Strict religious beliefs may influence fertility. Most religions are pro-natalist and, as opposed to contraception.
The health of the mother Unhealthy women tend to experience higher infant mortality and more unsuccessful pregnancies and to compensate they become pregnant again.
Economic prosperity

With a higher income, a family is more able to provide for children. Yet poorer families that require manual labour to make a living tend to have more children to help with this type of work.

Need for children High infant mortality rates in combination with the fact that families in agricultural societies require a lot of manual work, outs a lot of pressure on women to have more children.



Infant Mortality Rate

Total Infant Mortality Rate (IMR) - the average amount of deaths (up to 12 months) per 1000 children born.

Factors affecting the IMR

Environmental and social barriers prevent access to basic medical resources and thus contribute to an increasing infant mortality rate; 99% of infant deaths occur in developing countries, and 86% of these deaths are due to infections, premature births, complications during delivery, and perinatal asphyxia and birth injuries.

Factor Description
Malnutrition Malnutrition or undernutrition is defined as inadequate intake of nourishment, such as proteins and vitamins, which adversely affects the growth, energy and development of people all over the world.
Low birth weight Reasons for this include teenage pregnancy, an increase in pregnant mothers over the age of thirty-five, an increase in the use of in-vitro fertilization which increases the risk of multiple births, obesity and diabetes. Also, women who do not have access to health care are less likely to visit a doctor, therefore increasing their risk of delivering prematurely.
The health of the mother Unhealthy women tend to experience higher infant mortality and more unsuccessful pregnancies and to compensate they become pregnant again.
Economic prosperity

With a higher income, a family is more able to provide for children. Yet poorer families that require manual labour to make a living tend to have more children to help with this type of work.



Mortality Rate

Total Crude Mortality Rate (CMR) - the average amt of deaths per 1000 people.

Factors affecting the CMR

Mortality rate or death rate,[1] is a measure of the number of deaths (in general, or due to a specific cause) in a particular population, scaled to the size of that population, per unit of time. The mortality rate is typically expressed in units of deaths per 1,000 individuals per year; thus, a mortality rate of 9.5 (out of 1,000) in a population of 1,000 would mean 9.5 deaths per year in that entire population or 0.95% out of the total.

Factor Description
Ischaemic heart disease (119 per 100,000 population) Coronary artery disease (CAD), also known as ischemic heart disease (IHD), involves the reduction of blood flow to the heart muscle due to build-up of plaque in the arteries of the heart. It is the most common of the cardiovascular diseases.
Stroke (85 per 100,000 population)

A stroke is a medical condition in which poor blood flow to the brain results in cell death.

Lower respiratory infections (43 per 100,000 population)  

Lower respiratory tract infection (LRTI), while often used as a synonym for pneumonia, can also be applied to other types of infection including lung abscess and acute bronchitis.

Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (43 per 100,000 population)  Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is a type of obstructive lung disease characterized by long-term breathing problems and poor airflow.
Trachea/bronchus/lung cancers (23 per 100,000 population)

Lung cancer, also known as lung carcinoma,[7] is a malignant lung tumour characterized by uncontrolled cell growth in tissues of the lung.

Diabetes mellitus (22 per 100,000 population)

Diabetes mellitus (DM), commonly known as diabetes, is a group of metabolic disorders characterized by high blood sugar levels over a prolonged period.

Road traffic accidents (10 per 100,000 population)

A traffic collision also called a motor vehicle collision (MVC) among other terms, occurs when a vehicle collides with another vehicle, pedestrian, animal, road debris, or other stationary obstruction, such as a tree, pole or building.



Population Case Studies



New Zealand


CBR per 1000

12.1 13.2

CDR per 1000

7.2 6.89

TFR per Woman

1.63 - Significantly below replacement levels of 2.1 1.81

IMR per 1000

8 - In decline as living standards improve 4.4

Natural increase per 1000

4.9 - Low due to the one-child policy (outlined below). 6.31

Pop Growth (%)

0.46 1.89 - Higher due to immigration

Doubling Time

152 37

Dependency Ratio (%)

40.5 - a demographic divided has enabled this to be high but it will increase in the future 54.8 - A growing elderly population is increasing it.



One-child policy

China's one-child policy was part of a birth planning program designed to control the size of its population. Distinct from the family planning policies of most other countries (which focus on providing contraceptive options to help women have the number of children they want), it set a limit on the number of children parents could have, the world's most extreme example of population planning.

SuperGold Card


The SuperGold Card has public transport benefits like free off-peak travel (funded by the government) for senior citizens and veterans, has been a major initiative of the NZ First Party


Forced Migration

Forced Migration is the movement of refugees and internally displaced people (those displaced by conflicts) as well as displaced by natural or environmental disasters, chemical or nuclear, famine or government projects” - IASFM

Types of forced migration



Case Study


Religious and Sexual persecution




Genocide / Ethnic cleansing



Land Appropriation


Depletion of natural resources







Types of migrants

Refugee - a person residing outside of their country of nationality, who is unable to return because of a well-founded fear of persecution due to race, religion, nationality, membership in a political/social group or political opinion.

Asylum Seeker - a person that has left their home country but who claim to be a refugee that has not been accepted yet

Internally Displaced Person - people or group that fled their homes but still living within their country



Global City vs Mega City

Global city - cities which have a global sphere of influence (Economical, Cultural and Political)

Megacity - an urban area with a population of over 10 million inhabitants.





  • A large number of businesses
  • Higher paying jobs
  • The rise of the middle class
  • An influx of capital (foreign investment)
  • Overcrowding
  • A high rate of unemployment
  • Informal employment
  • Congestion
  • Corruption
  • Trafficking
  • Drug-related crime
  • Prostitution
  • Black Market
  • Modern-day slavery
  • Spread of disease


Megacity Case Study




Change over time


  • A shortage of public services, including education and medical care.
  • Removals of "urban villages" - low-cost housing generally populated by migrant workers.
  • An underclass of migrant workers
  • The need for city planning
  • Optimize its land-use structure by reducing the area of industrial zones while increasing the area allotted for green space
  • Environmental pollution
  • Gentrification
  • Increased flood risk

  • Traffic congestion (Central motorways regularly travel at 15kph)
  • Extremely high house prices

Demographic Ageing population.

  • Shanghai plans to limit the population to 25 million
  • Officially while Shanghai’s population is fairly constant, in 2018 it fell by about 10,000 people.


Ageing Populations

An ageing population: a population where the median and mean age are high and increasing. reasons for this are attributed to falling fertility rates and increasing life expectancy.


Trends and Patterns

Europe is the oldest continent, with 23 of the world’s 25 oldest countries. By 2040 more than 25% of Europeans are expected to be at least 65. But by far Japan is the oldest with an elderly dependency ratio above 45%.




Disadvantages & Causes

An ageing population is caused by the time-delayed impact of high fertility after WWII and to more recent improvements in healthcare. The change will bring widespread challenges at every level of human organization, starting with the structure of the family, which will be transformed as people live longer. There will, in turn, be new burdens on carers and social services providers, while patterns of work and retirement will similarly have huge implications for health services and pensions systems.


A Pro-natalist case study Japan

The ageing of Japan is thought to outweigh all other nations, with Japan being purported to have the highest proportion of elderly citizens. Japan is experiencing a "super-ageing" society both in rural and urban areas. According to 2014 estimates, 33.0% of the Japanese population is above the age of 60, 25.9% are aged 65 or above, and 12.5% are aged 75 or above. People aged 65 and older in Japan make up a quarter of its total population.


A Pro-natalist case study New Zealand's parental leave

Explanation and implications

The New Zealand government made it so that eligible employees who are the primary carer of a newborn or adopted child get up to 22 weeks paid leave (from July 1, 2018, and 26 weeks from July 1, 2020).



Anti-natalist policy case study China's one-child policy

Explanation and implications

The Chinese government first introduced the policy in 1978 and made it that parents can only have 1 child.



Gender Equality

Rwanda case study

Explanation and implications

As of 2018, the African country Rwanda ranks in the top 5 countries for gender equalityThe idea of fairness that dominates this country arose after the genocide against the Tutsi that occurred in 1994. The government is committed to ensuring equal rights for women and men without prejudice to the principles of gender equality and complementarity in national development; these ideas are exhibited through the roles of Rwanda women in government, the respect for women’s education and the role of women in Rwanda healthcare.


China Female Infanticide case study

Explanation and implications

The People's Republic of China and its predecessors have a history of female infanticide spanning 2000 years. Worldwide, infanticide has been practised since antiquity for the purpose of population control. It is an unsanctioned method of family planning that has been condoned for centuries in the area until recent times. The phenomenon is also referred to as female gendercide; however, the word gendercide can be used for both sexes.


Dutch gender equality case study

The Netherlands has a long tradition in emancipation policies to promote equal rights, equal opportunities, equal liberties and (shared) responsibilities for women and men.

In the current government, there are eight women on a total of 20 members (40%).

There are no specific measures to promote a gender-balanced representation in politics, nor are these debated either.

Over recent years, the specific focus has been on increasing labour force participation and on increasing safety.

The Dutch employment rate for the age group 20-64 is among the highest in Europe and clearly higher than the EU-28 average. For men, it was 81.3% in 2013, and 71.6% for women (Source: Eurostat database).

When pregnant, all working women are entitled to maternity leave. The total leave is 16 weeks(six weeks before and ten weeks after the birth) and is fully paid(up to a ceiling equal to the maximum daily payment for sickness benefit; for self-employed women the payment is up to a maximum of 100% of the minimum wage).

In addition, employers are obliged to protect their employees against sexual harassment. There are, however, no specific guidelines in this respect.


Human trafficking in Europe

The United Nations reports that 4 million people a year are traded against their will to work in one or another form of servitude.

The collapse of the Soviet Union has been identified as one of the main contributing factors in explaining the recent increase in human trafficking. It provided both human capital and new regional opportunities to fuel the expansion.

Another factor contributing to the rise in trafficking of women has been militarization and war in the Balkans. The presence of a large number of foreign men in the Balkans after the war in Yugoslavia led to the trafficking of thousands of women and girls for commercial sex exploitation. The connection between military bases and sex work is a well-known phenomenon and soldiers have helped drive the demand for brothels in this region.

Child trafficking is more likely to affect:


Nauru Case Study


Nauru (And Australia)


Description Nauru, is an island country in Micronesia, a subregion of Oceania, in the Central Pacific. With only a 21 km2 (8.1 sq mi) area, Nauru is the third-smallest country in the world behind Vatican City, and Monaco, making it the smallest state in the South Pacific Ocean, the smallest state outside Europe, the smallest island state, and the smallest republic. Additionally, its population of 10,670 is the world's third-smallest, after the Vatican and Tuvalu.
  • Operation Sovereign Borders (OSB) is a border protection operation led by the Australian Defence Force, aimed at stopping maritime arrivals of asylum seekers to Australia.
  • Very little is known about the people seeking asylum in Nauru but many detainees have since been returned to their countries of origin, including Iraq, Syria, Somalia, Sudan, Afghanistan and "unknown" destinations.
  • In recent years a number of Tamil People have been housed in the Nauru Regional Processing Centre fleeing persecution in Sri Lanka
  • The highest population at the centre was 1,233 detainees in August 2014 about 12% of the total population of the county
  • In February 2019, the last four children (of an original 200 in detention on Nauru in 2013) were resettled in the United States with their families.


    As of 31 March 2019, there were no people held in the detention centre.

  • On 19 July 2013, a riot occurred at the detention centre. Four people were hospitalised with minor injuries.  The riot began at 3 p.m. when the detainees staged a protest. Up to 200 detainees escaped and about 60 were held overnight at the island's police station. Accommodation blocks for up to 600 people, offices, dining room, and the health centre were destroyed by fire.


  • Very little is known about the consequences on the local population but it is known that 95% of employed Nauruans work for the government and at its peak, a large part of government worker worked for the Nauru Regional Processing Centre so we can estimate that at least 15% of the population would be involved in the Processing Centre.


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