Vol. 1 No. 2 (2017)
Articles

Prospects for accelerated fertility decline in Africa

John Cleland
London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine
Bio
This image of the cover of this issue of The Journal of Population and Sustainability has the title in block letters on a grey-green background.

Published 2017-05-01

Keywords

  • Africa,
  • population projections,
  • fertility,
  • desired family sizes,
  • population policies

How to Cite

Cleland, J. (2017). Prospects for accelerated fertility decline in Africa . The Journal of Population and Sustainability, 1(2), 37–52. https://doi.org/10.3197/jps.2017.1.2.37

Abstract

The future size of world population depends critically on what happens in sub-Saharan Africa, the one remaining region with high fertility and rapid population growth. The United Nations envisages a continuing slow pace of fertility change, from five births per woman today to three by mid-century, in which case the population of the region will increase by over one billion. However, an accelerated decline is feasible, particularly in east Africa. The main grounds for optimism include rising international concern and funding for family planning (after fifteen years of neglect), and favourable shifts in the attitudes of political leaders in Africa. The examples of Ethiopia and Rwanda show political will and efficient programmes can stimulate rapid reproductive change.

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