The demographic dividend and the ways in which population could be considered a resource when contemplating possible futures.
A. What is the "demographic dividend"?
Use the resources below to create your own definition of "The Population Dividend". What is the difference between what the IMF refer to as the first and second population dividends?
'Countries with the greatest demographic opportunity for development are those entering a period in which the working-age population has good health, quality education, decent employment and a lower proportion of young dependents. Smaller numbers of children per household generally lead to larger investments per child, more freedom for women to enter the formal workforce and more household savings for old age. When this happens, the national economic payoff can be substantial. This is a "demographic dividend."'
'Industrial countries have largely completed what is called the "demographic transition"—the transition from a largely rural agrarian society with high fertility and mortality rates to a predominantly urban industrial society with low fertility and mortality rates. At an early stage of this transition, fertility rates fall, leading to fewer young mouths to feed. During this period, the labor force temporarily grows more rapidly than the population dependent on it, freeing up resources for investment in economic development and family welfare. Other things being equal, per capita income grows more rapidly too. That's the first dividend.
This dividend period is quite long, lasting five decades or more, but eventually lower fertility reduces the growth rate of the labor force, while continuing improvements in old-age mortality speed growth of the elderly population. Now, other things being equal, per capita income grows more slowly and the first dividend turns negative. But a second dividend is also possible. A population concentrated at older working ages and facing an extended period of retirement has a powerful incentive to accumulate assets—unless it is confident that its needs will be provided for by families or governments. Whether these additional assets are invested domestically or abroad, national income rises.'
B. Identifying countries who might experience a demographic dividend
Study the population pyramids below.
Which country would you judge to be most likely to benefit from what the IMF describes as the first demographic dividend. Justify your answer.
Which country would be most likely to benefit from the second population dividend? Why?
C. Case study - South Korea
Use the materials below and what you have learned so far about the demographic dividend to create a Prezi explaining how and why South Korea has benefited from the demographic dividend. A link to an example created by a previous student can be found at the bottom of the page.