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Policy Insights

Researchers and collaboration partners of Population Europe as well as eminent experts from leading organisations contribute to the debate on demographic developments that are of public interest by providing insights into pressing policy issues.

By Roman Hoffmann, Wittgenstein Centre for Demography and Global Human Capital
Hoffmann and colleagues at the Wittgenstein Centre for Demography and Global Human Capital conducted a meta-analysis on the relationship between environmental change and migration, finding robust evidence that environmental factors explain migration patterns. [...]
by Andreas Backhaus, Federal Institute for Population Research (BiB)
Andreas Backhaus of the German Federal Institute for Population Research (BiB) summarises six potential pitfalls that can arise in the interpretation of coronavirus data. These pitfalls have the potential to mislead the public debate and thereby the course of future policy actions. [...]
by Francesco Billari, Bocconi University
Francesco Billari of Bocconi University argues that the European Union must use COVID-19 crisis exit funds to prioritise investment in children and the institutions that shape them, their schools and families. These funds would be, if well-orchestrated, a social investment: Improving the life chances of children would diminish inequalities in the long term, and at the same time it would increase human capital, leading to economic growth in the long run. [...]
by Alberto Palloni (CSIC) & Stephan Walter (Rey Juan Carlos University)
Palloni & Walter explore possible causes of differences in fatality rates due to COVID-19 by gender, country, and region. These explanations include comparability of statistics and accounting of cases; variance in resources and capacity to cope with the pandemic; population health composition; and most notably, biology and epigenetics. [...]
by Petra de Jong, Netherlands Interdisciplinary Demographic Institute (NIDI)
Petra de Jong (NIDI) used a mixed-methods approach to investigate the factors influencing people’s willingness to migrate and whether the receiving country's welfare system can influence individual migration decisions. She found no support for the "welfare magnet hypothesis" in the specific case of labour migrants, though her findings suggest that a generous welfare system in the country of origin can help encourage potential out-migrants to stay. [...]
by Alessandra Minello, University of Florence
The role of mothers, instead, is rarely central in the social mobility studies. However, Mothers play an increasingly important role in daughters' education and career advancement, especially if they are highly educated. Minello consequently argues for increased attention in the intergenerational mobility literature on the influence of mothers upon daughters' decisions and careers. [...]
by Daniel Rossetti, Stockholm University Demography Unit (SUDA)
Fewer and fewer children are being born in Sweden, while the average age of first-time mothers is rising. The latest figures from Statistics Sweden show that fertility rates in Sweden have fallen every year since 2009, and that the average age at first birth is the highest over a very long time. But none of the explanations researchers referred to in the past seem to be sufficient this time. So how can this development be explained? [...]
Roles – Challenges – Practices
This working paper is based on the outcomes of a workshop discussion with experts from different scientific fields who work at the intersection of research, politics, economics and society. It took place on June 3, 2019, at the office of the National Academy of Sciences Leopoldina in Berlin. [...]
Zur Bedeutung des sozialen Umfelds in städtischen Bezirken und ländlichen Regionen angesichts des demografischen Wandels
Ergebnisprotokoll des Workshops am Dienstag, 24. September 2019, mit Expert/innen aus Wissenschaft, Politik und Gesellschaft in den Räumen von Population Europe im WissenschaftsForum in Berlin. [...]
by Anthony Trueman, European Sociological Association
Working parents have better mental health when their young children are looked after part-time in nursery schools or other formal childcare, rather than just by relatives, research says. Research on 6,700 parents of one- and two-year-olds in 29 European countries, including the UK, found that parents using part-time formal childcare had better mental health than those who used informal childcare only. [...]