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Lecture 4

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Western University
Geography 1400F/G
Godwin Arku

Geography of Population: distribution, structure, dynamics, & politics Demography  Statistical study of human population  From the Greek o Demos – populace, people o Graphie – to write about  Population geography – the study of the spatial components of geography World Population Distribution  20 century – “the century of population explosion” (currently 7 billion people on Earth)  Population explosion is overwhelmingly occurring in developing countries  Very uneven distribution pattern  Some land areas are almost uninhabited  Other sparsely settled  Still others show very dense agglomeration  Nearly half of the world population are urbanites  Almost 90% of people live in north of the equator  A large proportion occupy a small land surface o (90% on less than 20% of the land)  Majority of population congregate at lowland areas  Continental margins have the largest concentration of people  Most clustered areas: East Asia, South Asia, Europe, North East United States, South East Canada  Distribution of Canada’s population: 70% south of 49 parallel  Ecuene – habitable area of the landscape (most people live here)  Nonecumene – uninhabitable area: the northern part of the country mostly covered by ice (cannot grow crops, etc.) Population Density What is density?  A numerical measure of the relationship between the number of people and some other unit of interest, expressed as a ratio Its importance? 1. Crude density – # of people per unit of land 2. Physiologic density – # of people per unit of area of arable land 3. Agricultural density – # of non-urban population per unit area of arable land Some Perspectives on Density Fertility or Birth Rates (1)  Crude birth rate – # of live births in a year * 1000 Total population  Total fertility rate – # of live births in a year * 1000 Population of women in fecund range Birth Rates (2)  Total fertility rate – 5 * Σ # of births in given age range Mid-year # of women in given age range  Age ranges will be: 15-19, 20-24, 25-29, 30-34, 35-39, 40-44, 44-49 *Difference between birth rate and fertility rate: birth rate is number of births during reproductive years and birth rate is between a certain age range World Fertility Rates Factors Affecting Fertility  Biological factors 1. Age 2. Nutritional well-being 3. Diet  Cultural factors (ex: contraceptive use, age of marriage, abortion)  Economic factors (ex: developed vs. developing countries) Death Rates  The crude death rate (CDR) is also known as mortality rate CDR = # of deaths in one year * 1000 Total population  Problems with this measure? o If you use total population as the denominator, countries with large populations will show that there is a low death rate and countries with small populations will show a high death rate  Infant mortality rate (IMR) – deaths age 1 year or less * 1000 1000 live births Demographic Transition Theory  Frank Notestin developed this theory  Gives you the relationship between population growth and level of development  There are 5 different stages with unique features Criticisms of the Demographic Transition Theory  Does not work in non-core areas because: o Implications of foreign versus domestic investment o Economic growth in non-core areas undermined
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