North Africa

The report provides a concise and comprehensive review of available data on past demographic trends in the region and combines this analysis with expert opinion on alternative future demographic trends (as described in Lutz, 1996) to calculate likely ranges of future population growth.

A very important and innovative feature of this study is that it explicitly includes the educational status of the population in its projections. This is done by multistate population projections, a method that largely originated at IIASA. Educational projections are an important task in themselves because education, as the major component of human capital, is a key factor in national development and in society's ability to cope with arising problems. But the projection of education is also particularly suitable for the demographic cohort-component method because it is the past and the present school enrollment of the young cohorts that largely determines the future educational composition of the population. It turns out that, due to the large educational fertility differentials and the inter-cohort differences in education in the countries of North Africa, an explicit inclusion of education makes population projections more accurate.

The study is not only relevant for the North African region and its neighbors; it also demonstrates that in general it is feasible and very useful to explicitly include education in population projections.


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Last edited: 22 July 2013

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Anne Goujon

Research Scholar

World Population

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