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Glossary

Women years

Women years are the number of years lived by a given number of women in an interval.

 

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Window of opportunity

The UN Population Division has defined the window of opportunity as period when the proportion of children and youth under 15 years falls below 30% and the proportion of people 65 years and older is still below 15%.

 

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Urbanization

Growth in the proportion of a population living in urban areas.

 

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Unemployables

Persons incapable of work are called unemployable.

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Total fertility rate

See also: Fertility rate 

Target year

The target year is the year in which a forecast variable reaches its ultimate value for the first time.

 

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See also: Population forecast 

Stillbirth

A birth occurring after 24 weeks of gestation in which the foetus is dead. The expulsion or extraction of an embryo or foetus before the 6th month of pregnancy is called an abortion or a miscarriage.

 

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Stationary population

In a stationary population, the annual number of births equals the number of deaths, thus producing a zero growth rate.

 

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Standardised death rate

The standardised death rate denotes the number of people per 1000 inhabitants that would have died in a certain year if the age structure of the population would have had a certain distribution. Standardisation is a method to eliminate the effect of the age structure on the death rate and make death rates of different populations comparable.

 

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Simulation

Sex ratio

The sex ratio is the ratio of the number of males to the number of females. It is usually expressed as an index value, i.e. the number of males per 100 females.

 

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Self-supporting persons

Self-supporting persons have sufficient means for their subsistence. They may be earners, rentieror persons of independent means, retired persons or pensioners.

 

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Selection bias

The term selection bias or selection effect most often refers to the distortion of a statistical analysis resulting from the method of collecting samples, i.e. when an error in choosing the individuals or groups to take part in a scientific study exists. If the selection bias is not taken into account, any conclusions drawn from the study may be wrong.

Sample

Retirement age

The retirement age is the age from which the individual is eligible for pension benefits.

 

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Reproductive period

Reproduction rate

Reproduction rates are generally female reproduction rates or maternal reproduction rates. The female net reproduction rate is defined as the average number of live daughters that would be born to a hypothetical female birth cohort, which would be subjected to a set of current age-specific fertility rates and mortality rates.

 

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Reproduction

The study of reproduction or population replacement is concerned with the natural process through which a population replaces its numbers. A distinction is drawn between gross reproduction or gross replacement, where no account is taken of mortality before the end of the reproductive period, and net reproduction or net replacement, in which mortality is taken into account.

 

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Rentier

A rentier is a person that lives off regular payments of invested capital or off the lease of land.

Renewable event

Renewable events are events such as pregnancies, births or migratory moves. They are assigned in an order based on the number of previous events of the same nature for the same person. Together with non-renewable events they comprise the statistics of population change.

 

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Rejuvenation

An increase in the proportion of young people involves a rejuvenation of the population.

 

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Regression

Reconstituted family

A reconstituted family is composed of an adult couple, married or unmarried, living with at least one child born from a previous union of one of the partners.

 

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Recognition

Recognition is the act of declaring oneself to be the father or mother of a child born outside marriage. When a child is recognised before or at the time of birth, this recognition is indicated on the birth certificate.

 

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Rate of natural increase

The rate of natural increase is the birth rate minus the death rate, implying the annual rate of population growth without regard for migration. Expressed as a percentage.

 

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Qualitative/quantitative analysis

Push/pull factors

Push and pull factors divide migration models into two broad categories based on migration streams between two areas. Social, economic or demographic variables play decisive roles. These variables are classified as push factors when they characterize repulsion from the area of origin, as pull factors resulting in attraction to the area of destination, and as intervening obstacles between the two areas.

 

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Propensity

The propensity of an event is its natural inclination or tendency.

Private household

See also: Household 

Prevalence of disease

The number of sick people at a given time.

 

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Predicted probability

Predicted or expected probabilities can be calculated empirically or from functions that predict or model the probability of an outcome or range of outcomes. This means that if a study is conducted with 100 subjects the outcome can be projected onto the rest of the population.

Population structure

The population structure is the composition of a population according to certain characteristics. In demography, age and sex are the most frequently used characteristics; marital status and region are also important. Other characteristics include nationality, country of birth, religious affiliation, and educational level.

 

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Population replacement

See also: Reproduction 

Population register

A population register denotes a system of continuous registration in a country. In these registers, every member of the population or every family may be represented, and the register is maintained or updated through information that reaches it through the local registration offices and through registration of any changes of residence. It is usually matched with census results and brought up to date at regular intervals by special checks.

 

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Population projection

Population projections are calculations that show the future development of a population when certain assumptions are made about the future course of population change, usually with respect to fertility, mortality and migration. They are in general purely formal calculations, developing the implications of the assumptions that are made.

 

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Population policy

All of the measures explicitly or implicitly taken by the authorities aimed at influencing population size, growth, distribution, or composition. A population policy is a set of measures taken by a State to modify the way its population is changing, either by promoting large families or immigration to increase its size, or by encouraging limitation of births to decrease it. A population policy may also aim to modify the distribution of the population over the country by encouraging migration or by displacing populations.

 

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Population growth

The extent to which a population increases or decreases over a certain period. It always refers to a certain area and to a certain period (usually one year). Population growth can be measured in numbers of inhabitants, but is usually expressed as a percentage, the so-called growth rate.

 

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Population forecast

Population density

Population density is the number of people per unit area, generally expressed per square kilometre.

 

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Population decline

Population decline is negative population growth.

 

See also: Population growth 

Population at risk

The population at risk is the population that is exposed to the occurrence of a vital event, for example, the total population in the case of deaths, the legally married population in the case of divorces and so on.

 

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Population (actual, resident)

The actual or de facto population is made up of the people in a specific area on census day, including visitors or transients. This marks a distinction to the resident or de jure population of the area, which only considers those that habitually live in the area. Here, temporary absentees are also included.

 

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Polygamy

A marriage in which a person of one sex has more than one spouse of the opposite sex. Polyandry occurs when a woman has more than one husband, and polygamy when a man has several wives. Polygamy contrasts with monogamy. When a person has two spouses the term bigamy is used.

 

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Place of residence

The place where a person lives is called the place of residence.

 

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Place of origin

See also: Migration 

Place of destination

See also: Migration 

Paternity leave

Paternity leave is leave granted only to fathers for a limited period around the time of childbirth (not necessarily immediately after birth, but within a short period thereafter).

 

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Parity

The number of children previously born alive to a woman. Two-parity women have had two children and zero parity women have had no live births.

 

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Parental leave

Parental leave is long-term leave available to parents to allow them to take care of an infant or young child a period of time.

 

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Pandemic

An epidemic that spreads over a very wide area.

 

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Overpopulation

The situation where an area's population exceeds the area's carrying capacity.

 

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See also: Optimum population 

Overall fertility rate

See also: Fertility rate 

Optimum population

The optimum population is the maximum sustainable size of a resident population in a given ecosystem (synonymous: carrying capacity).

 

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One-person household

See also: Household 

Odds

The odds in favour of an event or a proposition are expressed as the ratio of a pair of integers, which is the ratio of the probability that an event will happen to the probability that it will not happen.

 

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NUTS

Nuptiality

The study of nuptiality deals with the frequency and timing of marriages, with the characteristics of persons united in marriage, and with the dissolution of such unions.

 

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Nosology

The study of disease.

 

See also: Morbidity 

Nosography

The systematic description of diseases.

 

See also: Morbidity 

Non-renewable event

Non-renewable events are events such as fatal diseases, deaths, etc. Together with renewable events they comprise the statistics of population change.

 

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See also: Renewable event 

Non-marital fertility rate

See also: Fertility rate 

Net stream

See also: Net migration 

Net reproduction rate

The average number of daughters that a new-born girl would have during her lifetime if the age-specific fertility rates and mortality rates as observed in a certain year were to remain applicable.

 

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Net reproduction

See also: Reproduction 

Net migration rate

The net migration rate is the number of immigrants minus the number of emigrants over a period, divided by the person-years lived by the population of the receiving country over that period. It is expressed as net number of migrants per 1,000 population.

 

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Net migration

The net migration encompasses the number of people moving in minus the number of people moving out of a population. It contributes to overall population growth and can have a negative or a positive sign. Net immigration, or net in-migration, is used when arrivals exceed departures, and net emigration, or net out-migration, when the opposite is true. The sum of arrivals and departures in a country can be used to measure the volume of migration. A similar concept, applied to sub-areas of a country, is the migration turnover.

 

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Natural increase

The natural increase of a population is the excess of births over deaths.

Natality

Natality generally refers to birth rates and is a component of population change. Natality depends on the number of women in a population and their fertility.

 

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See also: Fertility 

Mortality rate

The general terms mortality rate and death rate encompass all the rates that measure the frequency of deaths.

 

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See also: Crude death rate 

Mortality crisis

A mortality crisis is a sudden, large increase in the death rate.

 

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Mortality

The demographic concept of mortality deals with the effect of death on the population. Mortality is an important component of population growth. All people die, but the age at which that will happen has strong demographic consequences.

 

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Morbidity

Morbidity is the study of illness, sickness, ill-health or disease in a population. Two aspects are considered: the incidence of disease and the prevalence of disease according to whether the new cases of disease are considered or the number of cases existing at one point in time. The compilation of morbidity statistics is hampered by the lack of a sharp distinction between health and the morbid state. Nosology and nosography contribute respectively to the classification and description of diseases.

 

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Migration turnover

See also: Net migration 

Migration models

Decisions about migration are shaped by economic, social, and cultural factors, so called push/pull factors. Migration models formalise these determinants. They also may describe the effects of migration at its origin and destination and the interactions between those effects. The simplest of these models are gravity models: the streams between the two areas are directly proportional to the size of their population, and inversely proportional to the distance between them.

 

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Migration balance

Migration

Migration is the process of moving to another area, usually implying movement across an administrative boundary. The administrative unit left by the migrant is the place of origin or place of departure; the unit to which the migrant moves is the place of destination or place of arrival. The concept of migration is often not applied to moves made by persons without a fixed place of residence, for example, nomads are excluded from the count of migrants in many countries.

Median age

The median age of a population is the age that divides the population into two numerically equal groups.

 

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Median

See also: Average 

Mean length of life

See also: Life expectancy 

Mean age

The mean age of a population is the average age of all its members.

 

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Mean

See also: Average 

Marital fertility rates

See also: Fertility rate 

Longitudinal data

Longitudinal or panel data are data from a (usually small) number of observations over time on a (usually large) number of cross-sectional units like individuals or households.

Life-course

An expression denoting an individual's passage through life, analysed as a sequence of significant life-events, including birth, marriage, parenthood, divorce, and retirement. In modern socio-demographic literature, the term life-course has replaced that of life-cycle in analysing these sequences of events, because the former carries fewer normative implications than the latter.

 

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Life table death rate

See also: Life expectancy 

 

Life table

A life table (also called a mortality table or actuarial table) is a table that shows, for each age, what the probability is that a person of that age will die before his or her next birthday. A number of inferences can be derived, such as the probability of surviving to any particular year of age and the remaining life expectancy for people at different ages.

 

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Life expectancy at birth

See also: Life expectancy 

Life expectancy

Life expectancy is the average number of years a group of individuals can expect to live at a given age if mortality at each age remains constant in the future. The life expectancy at birth measure is a particular case that represents the mean length of life of individuals based on mortality at all ages. Life expectancy is calculated using life table methods and the reciprocal of life expectancy at birth is the life table death rate.

Source: Population Europe

International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems (ICD)

This detailed description of known diseases and injuries is published and revised by the World Health Organization. It is used world-wide for morbidity and mortality statistics, reimbursement systems and automated decision support in medicine. Every disease (or group of related diseases) is described with its diagnosis and given a unique code, up to five letters long.

 

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International migration

International migration is moving to another country. It can be separated into immigration and emigration. The difference between immigration and emigration is called the immigration balance or simply migration balance. To measure international migration three factors are taken into consideration: space, time and motivation.

 

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Intergenerational transfers

Intergenerational transfers are primarily economic transfers from one generation to the following. In all societies intergenerational transfers are prevalent and influence inequality and growth.

Intergenerational equity

Intergenerational equity in economic, psychological, and sociological contexts is the concept or idea of fairness or justice in relationships between children, youth, adults and seniors, particularly in terms of treatment and interactions.

Infertility

See also: Fertility 

 

Infecundity

The biological inability of a man, a woman or a couple to produce a live birth.

 

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See also: Fecundity 

Infant mortality rate

The number of deaths (in a certain year) among children below age 1, per 1000 live births in that year.

 

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Infant mortality

Death of newborns before the age of 1.

Incidence of disease

The number of new cases of a disease in a year in a given population.

 

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See also: Morbidity 

Immigration

Immigration is moving permanently or for a large time span to another country.

 

See also: Emigration 

Human Development Index

Household

A household is a socio-economic unit of one or more persons who share housing and who jointly provide themselves with food and other necessities of life. An individual living alone is considered to be a one-person household. Definitions and classifications of households vary.

 

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Healthy life expectancy (HALE)

The healthy life expectancy is the average number of years that a person can expect to live in "full health" by taking into account years lived in less than full health due to disease and/or injury.

 

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Health

Health is a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.

 

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GNI PPP per capita

GNI PPP per capita is gross national income in purchasing power parity (PPP) divided by mid-year population. GNI PPP refers to gross national income converted to “international” dollars using a purchasing power parity conversion factor. International dollars indicate the amount of goods and services one could buy in the United States with a given amount of money.

 

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Gerontology

Gerontology is the study of the social, psychological and biological aspects of ageing. It is distinguished from geriatrics, which is the branch of medicine that studies the diseases of older adults.

 

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General fertility rate

See also: Fertility rate 

Gender

Gender is a notion used in social sciences. It refers to the cultural dimension of sexual differentiation (such as the distribution of power or the breakdown of roles between men and women in society), while the notion of “sex” reflects a universal biological reality.

 

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Filial relation

Line of kinship uniting a child with its father and its mother.

 

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Fertility rate

A fertility rate denotes the rate of births to a specified group, usually women, and is generally expressed as births per thousand. The denominator is usually the mid-year population in the stated period. The rates are calculated for groups of women and their women years. Male fertility rates are computed sometimes in an analogous manner. Fertility rates are generally expressed as births per thousand.
Other types of fertility rates are defined as follows:

Fertility

Fertility and infertility refer to reproductive performance rather than capacity, and are used according to whether there was actual childbearing or not during the period under review. The fertility level can be assessed per woman, per couple, per group, or for a total population. In addition, fertility, like the number of births, can be distinguished by rank number (parity).

 

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Fecundity

Fecundity is the biological capacity of a woman, a man or a couple to produce a live birth. Beyond individual variations, fecundity in women reaches its maximum at around age 20, starts decreasing slowly to age 35, and then more rapidly after age 35 until it falls to zero at around age 45 or 50.

 

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Fecundability

Fecundability is the probability of conceiving per menstrual cycle. A distinction is made between natural fecundability, in the absence of contraception, and residual fecundability in the opposite instance. The term effective fecundability designates fecundability in terms of conceptions that result in live births only. The conception rate during the period of exposure to risk is used to measure the effectiveness of contraception during periods of contraceptive use.

 

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Excess male mortality

Excess male mortality is an expression used to describe the excess mortality of men compared to the mortality of women. For a given age or age group it is usually measured as the ratio of the male mortality rate to the female mortality rate.

 

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Epidemiological transition

An epidemiological transition or health transition is the period of mortality decline that accompanies the demographic transition. It is characterised by improved health, nutrition and organisation of health services and a change in the causes of death, with mortality from infectious diseases progressively being replaced by mortality from chronic and degenerative diseases and accidents.

 

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Epidemic

An epidemic is a mass outbreak of a disease in a particular geographic area that spreads and then disappears relatively quickly.

 

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Emigration

Emigration is moving away from the country of birth or citizenship.

 

See also: Immigration 

 

Elderly support ratio

The elderly support ratio is the number of working-age people (aged 15-64) divided by the number of persons 65 and older. It indicates levels of potential societal support available for the elderly.

 

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Economic dependency ratio

The ratio of the inactive to the active population is called the economic dependency ratio.

 

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See also: Demographic pressure 

Earner

An earner is a member of the economically active population. An earner thus supports the social system or group and its dependents.

 

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See also: Dependents 

Early retirement

A situation when an individual decides to retire earlier and draw the pension benefits earlier than their normal retirement age.

 

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Doubling time

The number of years required for a specified population to double in size at the current rate of population growth.

 

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Divorce

Divorce is the final legal dissolution of a marriage; a separation of husband and wife that confers on the parties the right to remarriage under civil, religious and/or other provisions in accordance with the laws of the country.

 

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Disability

A disability reflects any limitation or lack of ability that a person experiences in performing an activity in the manner or within the range considered normal for a person, in other words, a limitation in learning, speaking, walking or some other activity (individual dimension).

 

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Depopulation

The state of population decline.

 

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Dependents

The economically inactive population may be divided into dependents and self-supporting persons. Dependents rely on the efforts of earners for their support; for example, this is the case of housewives and dependent children. A special category of dependents is that of public welfare recipients or persons receiving public assistance.

 

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Demography

Demography studies developments in the size, composition, and spatial distribution of populations. The size and the structure of a population changes through births, deaths or spatial motion of its people.

 

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Demographic transition

A demographic transition is the shift in a population from a traditional demographic regime marked by high fertility and mortality to a modern demographic regime in which fertility and mortality are low.

 

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Demographic pressure

Demographic pressure denotes the ratio between the number of youngsters plus elderly, on the one hand, and the number of 20-64 year olds, on the other hand. It is usually expressed as a percentage. Demographic pressure is a crude measure for the extent to which the "working" have to provide for the "non-working".

 

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Defined benefit pension plans

Defined benefit pension plans are plans in which the level of pension benefits promised to participating employees is guaranteed; benefits are related by some formula to participants’ length of service and salary and are not totally dependent on either the participants’ contributions or the assets in the fund.

 

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De jure population

The de jure population is a concept under which individuals (or vital events) are recorded (or are attributed) to a geographical area on the basis of the place of residence.

 

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De facto population

The de facto population is a concept under which individuals (or vital events) are recorded (or are attributed) to the geographical area where they were present (or occurred) at a specified time.

 

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Crude death rate

The crude death rate indicates the number of deaths per 1000 inhabitants in a certain year. It is quite easy to calculate and frequently used to measure the level of mortality. However, a major drawback is that the age structure of the population is not taken into account. For instance, the crude death rate in an old population is higher than in a young population, which does not necessarily imply anything about the real mortality level.

 

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Crude birth rate

The crude birth rate is the number of live births per 1000 inhabitants in a certain year. It is quite easy to calculate and often used to measure the level of fertility. However, a major drawback is that the age structureof the population is not taken into account. For instance, the crude birth rate in an old population would be lower than in a young population.

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Component method

Completed fertility rate

See also: Fertility rate 

Collective household

See also: Household 

Cohort

A cohort is a group of persons who share a common characteristic or experience within a defined period of time. Thus a birth cohort is formed by a group of people who were born on a day or in a particular year or period. A marriage cohort is a group of persons married within a defined period. The primary objective of cohort analysis is the study of the intensity and tempo or timing of demographic phenomena in a specified cohort.

 

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Cohabitation

Cohabitation is the situation of people who share the same dwelling. As a simplification, the term cohabitants is often used to describe couples who live together without being married, and such unions are referred to as consensual unions.

 

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Citizenship

Citizenship is the status of a legal member of a sovereign state.

 

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Census

Population censuses are taken to obtain information about the state of the population at a given time. In a general census, all inhabitants of a particular country are counted simultaneously. In a partial census, only a section of the population is counted, e.g. the inhabitants of a given area. A micro census is limited to a sample of the population, usually large in size, and belongs in the category of sample surveys.

 

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Carrying capacity

See also: Optimum population 

Birth order

The birth order describes the chronological order of live births for a woman or a couple. The first-order birth refers to the eldest child in a family. Depending on the statistics available, birth order may refer to all births to a mother or only to the births of the current marriage.

 

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Bias

Biases are systematic errors, e.g. introduced by the sampling strategy or interviewers when data are collected. Biases can cause observation errors in demographic research and affect estimates.

 

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Baby boom

A baby boom is a sudden and large increase in the birth rate.

 

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Average

The average or mean can be calculated in a number of ways:
A. The arithmetic average / mean consists of the sum of a series of quantities divided by the number of quantities. When the term average or mean is used without further qualification, the arithmetic average is generally meant.
B. The geometric average/ mean is sometimes used when all observed values are positive. It is the Nth root of the product of N values.

Ageing population

An ageing population is defined as a population in which the number of elderly (65+) is increasing relative to the number of 20-64 year olds.

 

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Age-specific fertility rate

The age-specific fertility rate denotes the number of live births per woman in a certain age group, per year. Differences in the age composition of populations are eliminated when using age-specific fertility rates.

 

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Age-specific death rate

The age-specific death rate is the number of deaths in a certain year in a certain age group, per capita of the population in that age group. Because there are important mortality differences between males and females, age-specific mortality rates are always calculated by sex. Differences in the age composition of populations are eliminated when using age-specific death rates.

 

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Age structure

The age structure indicates the composition of a population by age groups, also known as age composition, or age distribution.

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Age pyramid

The age pyramid is a graphical representation of the age structure and sex structure of a population in a system of coordinates. While the x-axis represents the amount of men (usually on the left) and the amount of women (usually on the right), the y-axis represents the various age groups.

 

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Age

Age is time lived since birth. Demographers calculate age in a number of ways:
A. Age in completed years: age at last birthday, i.e. number of complete years lived by an individual at a given moment in time.
B. Age reached: difference between the current year and the year of birth. It is used to define a birth cohort.
C. Exact age: the exact period of time elapsed since birth and a measure that therefore increases continuously. It is expressed in years, months and days, or in tenths or hundredths of a year.

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Adjusted infant mortality rate

The adjusted infant mortality rate indicates the probability of dying before age one in a given cohort.

Source: Demopaedia