by Carolyn Lamere, program assistant, International Programs
The demographic dividend—the idea that a decline from high to low rates of population growth can lead to dramatic economic gains—has become something of a buzzword in development circles. Sub-Saharan Africa holds the single largest block of remaining high fertility countries and while headlines tend towards the dramatic about demographic shifts there, less column space has been devoted to examining theunderlying issues causing these shifts or the other changes that will be necessary for countries to benefit from them.
A new ENGAGE presentation created by the Population Reference Bureau (PRB), “Harnessing the Demographic Dividend,” looks at countries that have benefited from the demographic dividend in the past as well as African countries which may be poised to experience it in the future, focusing on the investments needed for countries to work demographic shifts to their advantage.
A Brief History of the Demographic Dividend
To see how the demographic dividend has played out in the past, the presentation first focuses on Thailand. In 1960, fertility in Thailand was high; women on average had more than six children each and over 40 percent of the population was under the age of 15, amounting to almost 12 million children.
Read the rest of this post at The New Security Beat.