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Citation Information

Type Journal Article - Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
Title Meeting the Sustainable Development Goals leads to lower world population growth
Volume 113
Issue 50
Publication (Day/Month/Year) 2016
Page numbers 14294-14299
URL http://pure.iiasa.ac.at/13348/1/WP 16-007.pdf
Here we show to what extent expected world population growth will be lower as a
consequence of implementing the recently agreed Sustainable Development Goals
(SDGs). The SDGs include specific quantitative targets on mortality, reproductive health
and education for all girls by 2030, which will directly and indirectly affect future
demographic trends. Based on a multi-dimensional model of population dynamics that
stratifies national populations by age, sex and level of education with educational fertility
and mortality differentials, we translate these goals into SDG population scenarios
resulting in population sizes between 8 and 9 billion in 2100. Since these results lie
outside the 95 percent uncertainty range given by the 2015 UN probabilistic population
projections we complement the study through sensitivity analyses of these projections
that suggest that those uncertainty intervals are too narrow because of uncertainty in
baseline data, conservative assumptions on correlations, and the possibility of new
policies influencing these trends. This analysis quantitatively illustrates the view that
demography is not destiny and policies, particularly in female education and reproductive
health, can greatly contribute to reducing world population growth.

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