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  • Sociologist use concept of birth rate (number of live birhts per 100 population per year)
  • Long term decline in number of births since 1900
  • Fluctuations with 'baby bom's came after two world wards
  • Third baby boom in 1960's


  • as well as number of women who are of child bearing age, TFR also determines birth rate
  • Has risen since 2001 but is still considerably low
  • Changes reflect: Women remaining childless and women postpoining having children average age for starting a family is now 30
  • Rates for women in 30's and 40's have increased however women with in this age bracket may have less fertile years remaining and therefore produce fewer children

Reasons: Changes in postion of women, Decline in infant mortality rate, Children economic liablity (laws and Changing norms), Child centredness

Effects: Smaller families (women free to work, dual burden), Dependency ratio, Public services and policies (fewer schools and maternity and child health services)

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  • number of overall deaths has remained stable since 1900, fluctuations during world wars (1914-1918 + 1939-45) and influenza epidemic (1918)
  • since 1950 has declined slightly


TRANTER: 3/4 of decline was due to fall in number of deaths from infectious diseases: Diptheria, Measles, TB. Since they were common around young people, not surprising that most of decline occured among infants and children

  • Population deveoped immunity or diseases became virulent
  •  MCKEOWN: Improved nutrition more than 1/2 decline in birth rate and increased resistance and survival of diseases such as TB HOWEVER women who receive a smaller share of family food supply live longer than me and infectious diseases such as measles and diarroeah rose at a time during improved nutrition
  • Medical Improvment (after 1950's)s: NHS 1949
  • Public health measures: Housing and Clean air act reduced air pollution (smog)
  • Decline of mining  (dangerous manual occupation)
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  • If we take past two centuries life expectancy has increased by 2 years each decade


  • Hirsch: typical 'pyramid' shape is dissapearing now there are more equal sized blocks representing different age groups
  • Increasing life expectancy is a cause
  • Declining infant mortality
  • Declining fertility (proportion)
  • Effects:
  • Public services- consume a larger proportion of public services particularly 'old old' -Increased expenditure on health care mean changes to policies and provision of housing, transport and other services 
  • One person pensioner households: 14% mainly women
  • Dependency ratio : although it is offset by decline in dependent children
  • Ageing social construction: Townsend (statutory retirement age, pushes in to poverty)
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Hirsch: Policies need to change, reverse trend of earlier retirement with educational resources and encourage older people in large houses to 'trade down'


  • Immigration: moving into an area or society
  • Emigration: movement out
  • Net migration: diff between number immigrating and numbers emigrating expressed as a net inc or decr due to migration 
  • for most 20th century growth was because of natural increase until 1980's 
  • from 1900 largest immigrant group was irish, followed by jews then followed by people of british descent from Candada and USA
  • 1950's black immigrants from carribean
  • More ethically diverse society
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  • Since 1900's great nmajorty of emigrants gone to USA or OCWC
  • Push factors: unemplooyment, economic recession and Pull: better opportunites or wages abroad
  • After 1945 relatively poor economic situation of british countries compared with that of other countries acted as incentive to leave
  • in 2004: highest net inflow of people because of expansion of EU to include 10 states and these 10 states accounted for 4/5 of increase in net migration with poland accounting for biggwst share
  • immigrants and emigrants young, most likely male and move to work or for education
  • uk low fertility rate of 1.91 existing popul;ation can not replace itself so net migration stops population from decreasing
  • on onw hand most migrants are of woking age so they reduce dependency ratio but immigrant women tend to have higher fertility rate thus adding children to dependant population, however this reduces average age of population and in due course produces more workers
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