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The Politics of Population Change Eric Kaufmann Professor of Politics, Birkbeck College, University of London.

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Presentation on theme: "The Politics of Population Change Eric Kaufmann Professor of Politics, Birkbeck College, University of London."— Presentation transcript:

1 The Politics of Population Change Eric Kaufmann Professor of Politics, Birkbeck College, University of London

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4 What of Unevenness? World is not one cultural and political unit. If it were, no problem Power has shifted from empire to nation, from the rulers to the people since 1776/1789 Spread of democracy (starting 18 th c, esp. post-1980s) A battle of numbers. Getting a majority now counts, i.e. Iraq, Syria, Bahrain…

5 Uneven Growth Between: World Region/Civilization Nation Ethnic group Religion Regions within a nation

6 International Conflict Countries’ population as % of Britain Hedley Bull claims 100 million a threshold for Great Power ‘Boots on the Ground’ continues to matter as does scale economies for military procurement Perceptions matter as much as reality Rise of China?

7 Demography and Ethnic Conflict: Northern Ireland "The basic fear of Protestants in Northern Ireland is that they will be outbred by the Roman Catholics. It is as simple as that." - Terence O’ Neill, Unionist PM of Northern Ireland after resigning, 1969

8 Developing World Transition More Rapid At the end of the demographic transition Denmark 5 times greater population, Guatemala up to 24 times greater population.

9 Internal Racial Demographic Change: California,

10 UK: A Multiracial Future?

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13 Age Structure (‘Youth Bulge’) More young people – dependency ratio - poverty More young people – unemployment - poverty More young poor unemployed people – recruits for ethnic, class, religious violence More young poor unemployed people – elite/middle class fear – autocracy Aging population brings different effects

14 Young age structure, rather than Islam or poverty, is most closely related to democracy

15 Expansion of Islam; Decline of Animists and Seculars

16 Eurabia?

17 Direct Effect: Ultra-Orthodox Salford vs mainstream Jewish Leeds

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20 Conclusion Not just how much population, but how it is distributed across political, ethnic, religious units Uneven growth and transition, coupled with numbers increasingly counting for power Shifting within and between states Both numbers and age structure affect politics

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24 Source: Lesthaeghe and Neidert 2005


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