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Saturday, July 23, 2005

International Population Conference

This week the 25th International Population Conference was held in Tours France. I have put up a number of related posts on Afoe - here, here, here.

I am now going to post a list of links here to papers which seem to me to be useful. They are primarily for my own reference, but maybe someone else will enjoy reading some of them.

China’s uncertain demographic present and future
Wolfgang Lutz, International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA), Qiang Ren, Peking University, Sergei Scherbov, Vienna Institute of Demography & Xiaoying Zheng, Mahidol University

Human fertility declines with higher population density

Wolfgang Lutz, International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA), Maria Rita Testa, Vienna Institute of Demography & Dustin Penn, Austrian Academy of Sciences

Recent trends in first marriage in Russia: retarded second demographic transition

Sergei Zakharov, Russian Academy of Sciences.

In Russia, marriage remained early and universal over the 20th century. By the 1990s, mean age at first marriage was the same as in the second half of the 19th century. The traditional marriage pattern continued to persist despite the drastic political and economic changes that took place over the last 100 years since the collapse of the Russian Empire through the breakdown of the empire of the Soviet Union. Only did the Second World bring short-lived interruptions in age patterns of first marriage. In the mid-1990s, the age at first marriage began to increase, while the first birth is delayed. Cohabitation outside marriage develops intensively. Obviously, Russia is leaving the traditional marriage pattern for a new one. Two-three decades later than the western European countries, Russia is entering the Second Demographic Transition, and in the foreseeable future returning to the previous model of family formation is hardly possible.

Age transitions and socio-economic development in Scotland, Sweden, Japan, China, Egypt and Ethiopia, 1750-2010

Bo Malmberg, Uppsala University

This paper examines the age transition hypothesis of socio-economic development by analyzing six cases. First, the timing of the four age transition phases in each country is discussed. Second, the evidence for age related characteristics are considered. The conclusion is that both the child phase, the young adult phase, the middle age phase and the old age phase does demonstrate very distinctive socio-economic development characteristics in the way suggested by the age transition hypothesis. The paper ends with a discussion of how the age transition hypothesis can be used for forecasting purposes.

Relative cohort size and the risk of civil war, 1961-2001

Sarah E. Staveteig, University of California, Berkeley

Historians have posited that countries with youthful populations are more prone to war, but recent econometric studies of civil war have generally not found youth to be an important factor in conflict onset. This paper demonstrates that one likely reason for the contradictory evidence on youth and civil war is the poor conceptualization of the relationship between the two in prior research. A theory of the link between youth and conflict should involve Easterlin’s notion of relative cohort size (RCS). Using a logistic model of civil war onset worldwide, I find that, although several measures of youthful age structure are significant in the pooled cross-section analysis, first-differenced measures of youthful age structure involving RCS generally outperform other first-differenced measures of youth. The relationship between civil war onset and first-differenced RCS appears robust to a variety of controls. Hence a comprehensive understanding of civil wars would likely benefit from incorporating RCS.

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