Demography - Births


Population Size

Factors Affecting Population Size:

Births   (population increase)


Immigration- enter the country (population increase)

Emmigration- leave the country

Natural Change- there are more births than deaths

Net Migration- there are more people immigrating than emmigrating

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Birth Rate: the amount of babies born per thousand of population/per year.

Total Fertility Rate: on average how many children women will have during their fertile years.

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Reasons for change

Changes in birth and fertility rates

  • More women are staying childless
  • The average age that women have children has risen to 30, fertility rates are increasing for 30-40.

Older women---less fertilie---less children produced.

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Reasons for a decline in birth rate- 1

Changes in position of women

  • more quality
  • better education
  • access to divorce
  • a change in attitudes

Women can control thier own fertility due to btter contraception, so birth rates have declined. but also there has been a nge in mindset for women as many now focuse on generating a career for themselves first, instead of the traditional way of producing children.

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Reason 2

Decline in infant mortality rate:

(number of infants that die before 1st birthday/thousand/year)

  • better housing and sanitaion
  • better nutriton for infants, and also women
  • less women working
  • medical developments

A falling IMR leads to falling birth rate (Brass & Kabir)

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Reason 3

Children are an economic liabillity:

  • Laws- banning children from working, compulsory schooling, an increase in leave school age-- makes children more economically dependent on parents.
  • Changing Norms- the expectations of the material items from adult to child, means parents are spending more and more on children.
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Reason 4

Child centredness:

Families are having less children, so more time and attention is given to children- quantity to quality shift.

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Future Trends

Reason for slight increase:

Since 2001 there has been an increase in immigration, mothers from outside the UK immigrating to the UK on average have a higher fertility rate.

Overall projection for 2041:

Up to 2041 the expected annual number of births will be 300,000 per year.

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Effects of changing fertility-1

The Family:

  • smaller families , where both parents are able to work and take care of less children.
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The Dependency Ratio:

  • The earnings of the productive population are supporting the dependent population, children are a hude part of that group.
  • Fall in children will reduce the 'burden of dependency'
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Public services and policies:

  • less children- less cost of school, maternity and child health sevices, also cost of housing developments decreasing.
  • political decision- government will decide.
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