Recent changes in population structures can have a major impact on human welfare and the environment.
Many developing countries, particularly in sub-Saharan Africa, continue to face rapid population growth and other barriers to social and economic development. The poorest parts of the world will see continued population growth of more than 70 million per year. The population of sub-Saharan Africa is expected to increase by more than 1 billion by 2050. High unemployment and inequality among rapidly growing young populations are contributing to poor economic prospects. In the developed world, very low fertility and rising longevity are resulting in rapid population aging, increasing the costs of social welfare programs for the elderly.
Council research documents the link between population and development and explores the effect of population growth on societies, families, and individuals. We assist developing-country governments in identifying appropriate policies to benefit their population and reach national goals. This includes family planning programs to reduce unintended pregnancy and investments in girls' education to delay age of marriage and early childbearing.