Course 2017-2018 a.y.


Department of Social and Political Sciences

Course taught in English

Go to class group/s: 31

CLMG (6 credits - I sem. - OP  |  SECS-S/04) - M (6 credits - I sem. - OP  |  SECS-S/04) - IM (6 credits - I sem. - OP  |  SECS-S/04) - MM (6 credits - I sem. - OP  |  SECS-S/04) - AFC (6 credits - I sem. - OP  |  SECS-S/04) - CLEFIN-FINANCE (6 credits - I sem. - OP  |  SECS-S/04) - CLELI (6 credits - I sem. - OP  |  SECS-S/04) - ACME (6 credits - I sem. - OP  |  SECS-S/04) - DES-ESS (6 credits - I sem. - OP  |  SECS-S/04) - EMIT (6 credits - I sem. - OP  |  SECS-S/04) - GIO (6 credits - I sem. - OP  |  SECS-S/04)

Classes: 31 (I sem.)

Course Objectives
The relevance of demographic change for present economic and societal dynamics cannot be ignored. Low fertility and population ageing have emerged in developed countries, while high fertility, high population growth and health threats, largely intertwined with poverty, continue to affect population dynamics and economic development in developing countries. Migration connects the South to the North of the world in an important way.
This course provides a graduate-level introduction to the study of population, ranging from formal and applied demographic techniques to the study of current population trends and of their interrelationships with the economy.
The course is divided into four themes - all central in demography and population dynamics.
For each theme, we introduce key measurements and methods, show recent converging/differential geographical trends, give an overview of how social scientists have approached the theme over recent years - for then to present cutting edge and up to date research issues.
The themes are
  • Population structure and demographic processes.
  • Family change: women's (incomplete) revolution and gender equality.
  • From boom to bust: international perspectives on fertility.
  • The saga of human longevity: life expectancy, health and inequality.

Course Content Summary
Part 1: population structure and demographic processes.
  • Basic concepts and measures of population structure.
  • Births, migration and deaths in historical and current perspective (the demographic transition).
  • Age distributions and the economy.
Part 2: Fertility and reproduction.
  • Measurement of fertility. Postponement and tempo effects.
  • Fertility and economic development.
  • Migration and reproduction.
Part 3: Family change.
  • The transition to adulthood.
  • The "second demographic" transition.
  • Life course and social norms.
  • Gender and family change.
Part 4: The saga of human longevity: life expectancy, health and inequality.
  • The life table, differential life table patterns and measure of life expectancy.
  • The frontiers of survival - contemporary debates on current trends.
  • Measuring health conditions in developed and developing countries.
  • Using demographic tools to understand health and well-being.
  • Population health under globalization, increasing inequality and substantive convergence.

Detailed Description of Assessment Methods
Written exam.
The written exam consists of:
  • A 1st partial (covering the material presented in Parts 1 and 2) and a 2nd partial (covering the material from Parts 3 and 4), each weighing 50%.
or of
  • A general exam weighing 100%.
Written exams include essay-style questions.

    Lecture slides and papers to be specified in the detailed syllabus.

Last change 23/03/2017 10:40