population growth



We explain what population growth is and the types of population growth. What are its causes and consequences.

The world's human population is a perfect example of population growth.

What is population growth?

It is called population growth or demographic growth when change in the number of inhabitants of a given geographic region over time. This term is often used to talk about humans, but it can also be used in the study of populations animals (by the ecology and the biology). Population growth is, then, the increase (or decrease, if negative) in the total number of individuals over a period of time. weather settled down.

The study of populations and their dynamics of population change allows to offer reasons and theories regarding the growth or decrease of populations, as well as to foresee its consequences in the short, medium and long term. That is why it is the object of study of statistics and other disciplines specialized, as well as an important source of data to design social, economic, ecological policies, etc.

The world's human population is a perfect example of sustained population growth, especially during the last century. From being 2.6 billion in 1950 (when the UN He was still young), in 1987 the number of humans on the planet reached 5,000 million, in 1999 6,000 million and in 2015 7,300 million. This global figure is expected to reach 8.5 billion by 2030 and 11.2 billion by 2100, if current conditions were maintained.

Types of population growth

In principle, there are two types of population growth, one positive and one negative. We speak of positive growth when the population of the analyzed region has increased during the observed period, that is, there are more settlers. And, logically, growth will be negative when the population has lost settlers, that is, it has shrunk.

Causes of population growth

If a population reaches optimal sanitary conditions, birth rates increase.

The causes of population growth can be diverse, such as:

  • Fertility and conditions of Health. When a population reaches optimal sanitary conditions, which allows it to live beyond reproductive age and expand thefamilies, generally the rates of birth rate they increase, the population is fertile and reproduces abundantly. On the other hand, when conditions are hostile, individuals prefer not to reproduce or reproduce little, or simply do not meet the minimum conditions to exceed reproductive age. Another important element is the rate of death infantile, which must be low to allow new individuals to grow, form and eventually reproduce as well.
  • Longevity increase.If people live longer, they will be able to reproduce more and will also live to see their descendants reach adulthood, thus generating an elderly population.
  • Migrations. The arrivals and departures of individuals who decide to make their life elsewhere (immigrants) or who come from other regions to the one studied (immigrants), not only contributes to cultural and genetic enrichment, but can also add new settlers or subtract individuals who left.
  • Changes in the quality of life in general. A economy mighty one politics stable, high demand for workers or a large consumer market for services They are usually factors that generate immigration and positive population growth, since the inhabitants have a standard of living that guarantees them a future.

Consequences of population growth

An increase in population can cause an increase in pollution.

Increasing population can bring many benefits, but also problems and unexpected consequences, such as:

  • Increased demand for goods and services. Those populations that experience sustained positive growth over time begin to require more and more inputs to sustain the level of demand, which allows jobs to be filled, the economy to mobilize, but also that there is a greater competitiveness and that certain feelings of dissatisfaction are fanned (such as the xenophobia).
  • Exchange and cultural and genetic enrichment. Miscegenation is an enormous source of diversity and wealth. For this reason, populations that remain isolated for too long become culturally and genetically stagnant as they do not have a source of novel ideas or ideas. Genetic information different (thus reducing the proportion of tares and mutations).
  • Deterioration of the standard of living. When the host society cannot offer the minimum necessary to migrants or new generations, an uncontrolled increase in the population can increase the pollution, the population density (causing overcrowding and scarcity of certain goods and services, which logically makes them more expensive), or the poverty.

Population growth rate

The population growth rate (PGR for its acronym in English) is the index that indicates the growth or decrease of the number of individuals of a geography determined during a specific period. Using official figures obtained from local bureaucracy and registration apparatuses, it can be determined by applying the following formula:

Growth rate = (final population - initial population) / initial population

A positive growth rate indicates an increase in the number of inhabitants, while a negative one indicates a contraction in the population. In either case, the population variation can be expressed as a function of the growth rate, that is, the percentage of variation:

Growth ratio = Growth rate x 100%

In those cases in which the growth rate is zero, we will be in the presence of a population in equilibrium: neither in population increase, nor in decrease. This means that the birth rate and the mortality are equated.

Countries with higher population density

Monaco has a density of approximately 19,307 inhabitants / km2.

Population density indicates how heavily populated a specific territory is, assuming an average distribution of the population across its surface. The regions with the highest density are those with the least surface area per inhabitant, while the least populated will allocate a large surface area to each.

The most densely populated countries should not be confused with those with the largest populations; the former can present high densities due to their limited geographic dimensions, which allows them to have a relatively small population.

According to data from 2017, the seven most densely populated countries in the world are:

  • Monaco. In Europe, with a density of approximately 19,307 inhabitants / km2.
  • Singapore. In Asia, with a density of 8,017 inhabitants / km2 approximately.
  • Bahrain In the Middle East, with a density of 2,617 inhabitants / km2 approximately.
  • Vatican City. In Europe, with a density of approximately 1,818 inhabitants / km2.
  • Malt. In Europe, with a density of 1,387 inhabitants / km2 approximately.
  • Maldives. In Asia, with a density of 1,188 inhabitants / km2 approximately.
  • Bangladeshi In Asia, with a density of 1,145 inhabitants / km2 approximately.
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