case study: britain's baby boom

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Article review sheet- geography review November- Britain's baby boom
Overview of the article
Britain is experiencing a rise in the number of births per woman (fertility rate) over the past
year (2012) and has reached the highest levels in 40 years, as well as a higher population and
faster growth. This could be seen as a solution to the ageing population as there are more
workers however, this may not be the case as the current generation of elderly people are
living longer as there have been many advance in healthcare and living standards. Also, the
increased fertility rate has mainly been seen in the migrant population, as there fertility rate of
a migrant women in the UK is 2.2 compared to a fertility rate of 1.9 of a UK born woman. The
impacts of an increasing population include increases in public spending such as increasing
social care and healthcare for the increasing elderly population. There has been a fall in
teenagers in the past decade which suggests less can be spent on education but the demand
for primary school places is high, the demand for this is highest in areas with a high migrant
population such as London where 30% of the population was born overseas.
What are the places discussed in the article and are they regional, national or local in scale?
Local scale (specific areas of the UK such as London) but mainly national scale (overall
population trends in the UK)
Are there any competing arguments discussed, if so what are they?
Increasing fertility rate in the UK is due to a high fertility rate in migrant workers who have a
fertility rate of 2.2 compared to a native British woman who has a fertility rate of 1.9.
However, native UK women contribute to one third of the increased births.
The increase in fertility rates could be seen as a solution to the ageing population as there will
be more young people of working age to support the elderly population's care, however the
number of elderly people is also increasing faster than before and has meant that a increased
fertility rate may not be the solution as improving healthcare, and living standards have
increased the life expectancy of the elderly population, meaning more of them will live for
longer and will therefore need support for longer.
List some key facts and figures for supporting detail
Birth rate reached its highest level in 40 years in 2012
New population record of 63.7 million is due to increasing migration and higher numbers of
Faster growth than any other EU nation (population grew by 0.7% between June 2011 and
June 2012)
Increased life expectancy especially for males due to increased healthcare, improvements in
lifestyle such as less people smoking.
Advances in healthcare mean that someone who is 65 can now expect to live to 88 at least.
Did anything surprise you? Summarize briefly what you learnt from the article
More migrant women than I previously thought, and that has led to an increase in the fertility
rate. The increase in the population of the UK is due to migration but also due to increasing
fertility rate but this will not be enough to support the growing elderly population.

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