Case Studies

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China's One Child Policy 1979

  • Previously, the government encouraged women to have more children so they would be the strongest country with the biggest army
  • The population started to become so large that there was overcrowding and food shortages
  • In 1979, the One Child Rule was created
  • The aim was to half the population in 100 years
  • In 2009, there were 35,000 abortions a day
  • It prevented 400 million births
  • 25% of women have had at least one abortion
  • 76% supported the scheme at the time
  • If you obeyed the rule, there were rewards: higher wages, priority housing and education, interest free loans, bonuses etc.
  • Penalties include: being fired, possessions confiscated, fines, pressure to have an abortion etc.
  • Exceptions to the rule were introduced: rural communities could have more than one child due to tradition and more flexible upkeep of the rule; if you had a girl, you could have one more child to have more chance of having a baby boy. Boys produced more income and were more valuable for the army etc. This created extreme sexism.
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Aging Population in Britain

  • In Britain we have a better quality of life due to good services (such as healthcare and security). This raises the life expectancy
  • People are beginning to have less children and having them later on in life, because of education and less need for income. The birth rate is lower than the death rate
  • In 2013, 1/3 of children born were expected to live over 100
  • In 2012, there were more people aged 65+ than under 16s for the first time in Britain
  • The aged population depend on the economically active population to pay for taxes, which pays for services they use such as the NHS
  • The bigger the aged population, the more the economically active population need to earn which creates conflict between the government and the tax payers
  • Aged population receive pensions and benefits, also paid for by the economically active
  • Solutions include: raising the retirement age, increasing migration to fill the job vacancies therefore taxes are paid, raising taxes etc
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Migration from Mexico to USA

  • Push factors: poor facilities in Mexico, such as little healthcare (1800 people to a doctor); low paid jobs (GNP: $3750); poor education (adult literacy rate being 55%); lack of jobs (40% unemployed); low life expectancy (72 years)
  • Pull factors: good facilities in the USA, such as healthcare (400 people to a doctor); well paid jobs (GNP: $24750); good educations (adult literacy rate 99%); many jobs available; high life expectancy (79 years)
  • A 2000km border stands between Mexico and the USA to prevent illegal immigrants entering the country
  • Border Patrol protect the border with trucks, planes and weaponry; in 1995 they caught 850,000 immigrants and deported them
  • The USA's government have to pay towards the Border and Border Patrol
  • Some people argue that the Mexicans take many of the Americans' jobs
  • Big pressure on the USA's services as the immigrants use them; cultural and racial issues
  • Wages are lowered in the USA because companies hire these immigrants
  • $6 billion is sent back to Mexico by immigrants which could help improve the quality of life in Mexico
  • Santa Ines in Mexico has lost 2/3 citizens due to migration
  • In Mexico there is a shortage of men for women and economically active people
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LEDC urbanisation in Rio, Brazil

  • Shanty Towns are called 'favelas' in Brazil
  • Created when proper housing is not afforded; temporary shelters are formed out of scrap materials such as metal sheets and wood
  • They are made on unwanted land, such as steep unfertile soil, close to a city so people can get jobs in industry
  • Rochina is Rio's biggest favela: home to over 150,000 people and overlooks the city, only 1km away from the South East coast
  • It started with few settlements, no sanitation, water or electricity; it has been built up over time
  • Local authorities have 'self-help' schemes: they provide materials such as concrete and bricks for buildings, so many houses in Rochina are now properly built and structured
  • Electricity and water supply has also been provided in the area, but many people still have no access to this
  • The citizens have been legally granted this land
  • Many citizens have started their own businesses in their houses, such as hairdressers
  • Schools have been built through charity work and education is slowly getting better
  • Drug gangs are a big issue and the crime rate is very high; there is no security
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The Docklands, London

  • In the 19th Century the Docklands were used for industry and housing
  • In the 1950s, ships became too big to fit in the narrow channels and they started to become unused.
  • In the 1970s, it became derelict; there were very few jobs in the area and the houses were very outdated with no electricity and limited water supply.
  • In 1981, the LDDC (London Docklands Development Cooperation) were told to improve the area socially (improve housing and facilities), economically (restore jobs and transport links) and environmentally (reclaim the derelict land)
  • 22,000 modern appartments were created by renovating old factories and buildings, and 10,000 terraced houses were modernised to create good quality housing
  • The area's population: 1981- 40,000         2000- 80,000
  • The available jobs:       1981- 27,000         2000- 90,000
  • Transport links were created, such as the city airport and train tracks
  • Facilities were created, such as leisure centres, a campus for a university in East London and new shopping malls
  • 200,000 trees were planted and 750 hectares of land were reclaimed
  • Previous citizens were moved out and the areas community has changed, the new jobs went to new citizens and the houses became too expensive for them to stay
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Counterurbanisation in Nettleham, England

  • Counterurbanisation: people moving from an urban area to a rural area
  • Push factors: polluted air in the city, expensive housing, traffic, no community, competition for facilities (e.g education), little open space, crime rates, noisy
  • Pull factors: fresh air, cheaper housing, no traffic, community spirit, easy access to facilities, big open space, low crime rates, quiet
  • Nettleham is growing due to counterurbanisation: there are several takeaways in the village, a school, a church, etc
  • New houses have been built to support the increasing population
  • Recently, some residents are arguing that the village is being ruined and the community spirit will soon be lost; people have complained to the council that Nettleham is not what it used to be
  • New residents cause traffic and pollution, they may not fit in with the previous residents and house prices rise as the village becomes more popular. Previous residents may not be able to compete with the new residents and might have to leave
  • Local businesses may have to shut down as chain companies move in, such as the Lincolnshire Co-operative instead of local products
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Retail Change in White Rose Centre, Leeds

  • People used to go to the CBD to buy their goods, but now there is the option to go to one place and buy everything in one place
  • Extremely large sphere of influence: people travel from all round to visit the White Rose Centre
  • Has something for everyone: beauty shops, services (such as Boots Opiticians), clothing shops, household goods (such as sky), supermarkets (such as sainsburys), and many more
  • Shopping centres have made shopping a recreational activity rather than a chore
  • The centre has brilliant transport links: it is only 3 miles from the city centre, it is walking/cycling distance from many residential areas, it is easily accessed in the car because of the M62, and it is situated very close to a train station.
  • Due to the great amount of space it is possible to have shops selling big products such as white goods (fridges etc)
  • The CBD suffers due to these big shopping centres, because it is easier to get to them and everything is in one place. People visits individual shops less because there is less choice and they have to walk around the city to find each shop
  • The council tries to improve the CBD so shops don't have to shut down, but this costs alot of money and businesses (especially small businesses) have to shut down
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Japan Earthquake 2011

  • The Pacific Plate is being subducted by the Eurasian Plate at the destructive boundary; the Pacific Plate slipped 24 metres after great amounts of pressure built up, causing an Earthquake (magnitude of 9) lasting 6 minutes on March 11th
  • The residents received a warning a short time before the waves arrived, however as they were so used to earthquakes, only 58% of people headed for higher ground
  • There is an estimated $300 billion cost in damage
  • The sudden movement of the plates released energy on the boundary, creating waves that headed towards the coast; they started to catch eachother up as they reached the land which created a wave 39 metres in some places; the 10 metre sea wall did not stop the water and the tsunami flooded 217m2 of land
  • About 16,000 people killed2,500 people were reported missing; 230,000 homeless
  • The tsunami stopped the nuclear power plant from cooling, so there was a meltdown and an explosion which caused radioactive materials to leak into the water. In 2015, there were still radioactive materials in a water sample taken from the coast
  • 110,000 nesting sea birds were killed due to the tsunami; the Earth shifted on its axis, now a day is a microsecond shorter; the Earthquake caused some icebergs to break in Antartica
  • Japan has improved their tsunami warning system since
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Mount. Pinatubo 1991

  • Mount Pinatubo (a stratovolcano) erupted on June 15th, 1991 in the Philippines
  • The 7.8 magnitude earthquake was felt for a 60 mile radius
  • 22 million tons of sulfur dioxide erupted into the stratosphere which lowered global temperatures by 0.5 degrees celsius and caused acid rain
  • An ash cloud covered 125,000km2, bringing darkness to central Luzon
  • Predictions of this eruption meant that 5,000 lives were saved and $250 million in damage through valuable possessions and people being removed
  • There was $100 million in damage
  • Ash destroyed the two biggest US military camps in the Philippines
  • Primary effects: ash completely covered 80,000 hectares of land; 150km2 of reforestation land was destroyed by ash; 800,000 livestock and poultry were killed847 people were killed under collapsing roofs and 1.2 million people lost their homes
  • Secondary effects: lahars (volcanic mud/debrisflow) eroded rivers and killed 100 people, 200,000 people were evacuated but nearly 20,000 people have never returned
  • Charities such as Oxfam provided food and blankets in evacuation camps
  • New houses are built on stilts to prevent future lahars burying them
  • Norway and the UK sent millions in aid
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Hurricane Katrina 2005

  • On the morning of August 29th 2005 a tropical storm formed off the Gulf Coast
  • When it reached the land, it was a category 3 hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Scale with wind speeds between 100-140mph, covering 400 miles
  • There was $100 billion in damage
  • A tropical depression in the Bahamas on August 23rd allowed experts to predict the tropical storm
  • A storm surge 9 metres high caused 80% of the city to be underwater; people climbed to rooftops 
  • 80% of the city was evacuated, 10,000 people sought shelter in Superdome (a stadium in New Orleans)
  • Coast guards saved 34,000 people in the New Orleans alone, and people helped eachother by offering shelter and resources
  • The government was not prepared for a hurricane of this size and had no immediate solutions to the problem
  • 2,000 died and 90,000m2 of land was affected 
  • Money was then put into improving hurricane predictions, the government is still recovering from the disaster 
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Ethiopia Drought 1984/2006

  • The Horn of Africa is in the tropics, so rainfall is always unreliable. Rainfall had not come when expected for 4 years
  • There was no groundwater due to deforestation (77% of trees had beencut down), overgrazing and overcultivation: this all leads to desertification
  • Herdsmen began to migrate, 1000s of cattle were moved however 95% died due to starvation and slaughter when the people were desperate for food
  • Food prices rose by 130% due to the extreme shortages
  • The only water available was dirty, which made disease such as cholera spread; the malnourished people were vulnerable and caught disease easily
  • 6 million people were starving with no way of growing crops
  • Due to Ethiopia being an LEDC, they had no way of helping its people 
  • In 1984, a charity single was produced called 'Feed the World' by Bandaid to raise awareness and it was very successful and raised millions
  • Some countries sent powdered milk before realising you needed water to mix it with
  • UNICEF donated $16 billion to build wells for access to clean water and planted trees to improve groundwater storage in the future
  • Other charities such as Oxfam and Wateraid work towards improving access to clean water
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HSBC Call Centres in India

  • HSBC moved many of their call centres to New Delhi in India, an LEDC
  • 1200 people in London lost their jobs when the call centres shut down
  • Push factors: high tax, high minimum wages, overskilled staff etc
  • Pull factors: little tax, low wages, staff who need little training, paid to move to the country etc
  • They would pay about £22,500 a year for an english person to work in a call centre whereas someone in India only needs to be paid £2500 (9 times smaller)
  • This little wage is much better than any other wage available to them
  • The Indian workers learn english, communication skill, and how to use modern technology which is vital for future jobs; it gets them one step ahead compared to others
  • It benefits HSBC significantly and also benefits India, as they can use this earned money to develop the country
  • People in the UK are complaining because there has been great job loss and some argue that they should be prioritised if they can't find another job 
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Lucky Goldstar, Newport

  • There was a significant amount of lost jobs after there was a shortage in the steel industry; the Welsh population was desperate for work
  • In the mid 1990s, South Korean 'Lucky Goldstar' (LG) were paid £180 million (£3,000 each job created) by the WDA (Welsh Development Agency) to create 6000 jobs in the area and 15,000 support jobs
  • The plan was to build 2 factories on 250 acres of land which produced TVs and PC monitors; LG stated they wanted to 'be the global best'
  • It was named the largest investment in Europe
  • It cost LG £1.7 billion to build these factories, however the second one was never completed
  • There was a recession in Asia in late 1997-98 which caused LG to lose great amounts of money; they had to pull out of the deal
  • Only 2000 jobs had been made in one of the factories, but the products they were created were already outdated and nobody bought them
  • The factory closed in 2006 and the buildings became derelict; the WDA had also lost £180 million
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Nam Theun 2, Laos

  • Laos in South East Asia is an LEDC
  • The NT2 dam was began in 2003; completed in 2009 and was functioning in 2010
  • The aim was to create 1000mW of hydroelectric power, which would be sold to Thailand for $150 million a year; $80 million of this would pay for the development of Laos
  • It cost $1,3 billion (more than Laos' annual budget) which has made them go into debt as they need to pay this back to the World Bank and Asian Development fund.
  • It would create jobs, renewable energy and new homes in the area.
  • The dam starved one side of the river causing it to shrink; this limited 100,000 people's water supply (for drinking, washing and farming); fish migration was disrupted; fish farms' water supply was lost which lost jobs, income and food source; 6,000 farmers had to move as their crops could not be watered
  • On the other side of the dam, 450km of land was flooded (the size of Singapore) which made species of bird lose their habitats
  • Pollution was caused in the making of the dam and transporting materials
  • Thailand didn't need as much energy as they thought and the dam didn't create great income
  • Jobs went mostly to people with the skills needed, which weren't from the area; the wages went to other places
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Water Aid in Ghana, West Africa

  • Asampombisi in Ghana, West Africa
  • 3 million people in Ghana don't have access to clean water
  • 2,100 children under 5 years old die from waterbourne diseases (such as cholera) a year
  • 22 million people in Ghana have poor sanatation
  • Water Aid is a charity run by donations in MEDCs, such as the UK
  • They built a 10m deep well in Ghana so the people in the area could have clean water; they aim to allow the whole population clean water and toilets
  • Last year they gave 70,000 people access to clean water in Ghana and 49,000 improved sanatation
  • Clean water and good sanatation improve the peoples' quality of life greatly and it is only a small-scale project
  • There has been a significant decrease in deaths from cholera and other disease caused by dirty water
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BP Oil Spill 2010

  • On the 20th April 2010, in the Gulf of Mexico, 41 miles from the coast of Louisiana, a well released hydrocarbon gas which exploded and left a fire burning for 36 hours
  • The rig collapsed into the sea, killing 11 workers and injuring 17
  • 60,000 barrels of oil were released a day from the well which was located nearly 5,000 feet below the surface of the water
  • In total, 4,900,000 barrels were leaked, polluting 1,100 miles of shoreline 
  • After the the station closed, 12,000 were left unemployed
  • Animal deaths: 1,400 whales; 12% of pelicans; 30% of laughing gulls; 800,000 birds; 1,700 turtles (300,000 turtles were in the area due to breeding patterns - so the killed turtles in this sea affected the global population of turtles)
  • The Louisiana Pancake Batfish is now endangered due to the disaster
  • BP compensated the affected people $20 billion in total (the families of the injured/killed and the tourist/seafood businesses who lost income)
  • $14 billion was spent on cleaning up, which took 70 million hours in total for workers
  • Cleaning up including removing the oil from the sea, cleaning animals who had been covered in oil, and compensating people
  • They now have a long-term fund that pays for research on improving the ecosystem in the area; but they faced many fines for the evironmental damage they caused
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hamzat joda



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