Lecture 19 - BIO220

we must understand why demographic transition occurs

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Unformatted text preview: ed world will be required to make changes 4 20/03/2013 -3 Projections: Population continues to go up, Population levels off, Population decreases -Which is most likely to occur? -We must understand why demographic transition occurs -Our understanding is still limited Will smooth demographic transitions occur in developing countries? Population issues can be contentious • Perhaps not, might stall: don’t know why fertility rates decline in particular societies • If social structures & health care are overwhelmed, mortality may not stay down (e.g., HIV infections ~25% in some countries; campaigns against condoms) • Perhaps yes: women tend to reduce births when information and contraception become available (see movie Mother) -Empowering women reduces children: children l ater, greater interbirth inter val, fewer children -Decline in mortality: attributed to vaccination, antibiotics etc. -These declines may not be permanent! -In some societies, 25% of people with HIV will really slow the popln growth rate. Medical/technology will not be able to compensate and keep the growth rate high Case study: Wanna bet? • Neo Malthusians vs. cornucopians • Thomas Malthus (1798): growth checked by vice, war, disease, famine • Neo Malthusian view: continued human population growth is unsustainable; current level is probably unsustainable • Cornucopian view: technological improvements will allow growth without limits 1 2 Malthus: Growth of populations will be kept in check by war, disease, famine Neo-Malthusian: Human health will grow until growth is un-sustainable. Current level is prob also a lready unsustainable! -Influenced C. Dar win when he discovered NS -Cornucopian: Technology will allow the pop to grow without limits 2 Julian Simon, prominent cornucopian economist • Over consumption not a problem because new technologies arise • Resources might be physically limited but are economically unlimited • More people means more brains to solve problems...
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