GEOG101 Chapter Notes - Chapter 3: Neolithic Revolution, Doubling Time, Demographic Transition
SchoolUniversity of Waterloo
DepartmentGeography and Environmental Management
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GEOG 101 – Readings
Chapter 3: Population
Population grew so slowly before the s that not until the s did the world’s population reach a billion
The increase of 7 billion people in only 200 years has been caused by two major revolutions:
o Neolithic Revolution: The domestication of agriculture and livestock.
The first occurred approximately 12,000 years ago when humans, in large numbers, began to
give up hunting and gathering to settle down in one location as farmers.
Grains and wheat began to be planted in particular locations, allowing humans to settle in one
place for an entire year.
Previously people needed to more periodically to find food or game animals.
Believed to have happened quite quickly, as if humans suddenly figured out that seeds could
be planted and crops grown.
o Industrial Revolution
Mid-18th century; Northern Europe.
Innovations in textile machinery made factories possible, and farming innovations allowed or
forces many farmers and rural workers to give up agricultural life for more predictable factory
Revolution brought innovations in science and public health.
Sophisticated water and sewer systems, improved medical technique, better
prevention of famines caused significant drop in death rates in industrial areas.
It is the decline in mortality, not an increase in fertility, that cause a significant ride in
population during the 19th and 20th century.
From about , BCE to , the world’s population grew slowly but steadily, although plagues occasionally
caused significant reductions in human numbers. (I.e. the Black Death)
Another 20th century change that caused populations to increase was a significant increase in life expectancies.
Arithmetic density: the population of a region or country divided by its total area.
Physiological density: the number of people per unit of arable (i.e. farmable) land.
The Basic Demographic Equation and Fertility
The population of an area can be expressed by the basic demographic equation:
Future population = current population + (births – deaths) + (immigrants + Emigrants)
o Refers to how many children are born in a given time period.
o Crude birth rate (CBR): The number of children born per 1,000 people in a population.
o Total fertility rate: how many children, on average, a woman can expect to have in her lifetime, given
the current fertility rate.
The TFR has to be about 2.1 – 2.3 for a population to stay the same size (Known as replacement
level of fertility OR zero population growth)
o Fertility is influenced by:
Health, economics, education, culture.
Mortality and Population Change
The most commonly used measure for deaths is the crude death rate (CDR):
o The number of deaths per 1,000 people in a population during a year.
Global average: 8/1000 people.
o Infant mortality rate (IMR):
(Number of infants who die before age 1/ all births) x 1000
o Natural Population Change:
RNI (Rate of Natural Increase) = crude birth rate – crude death rate
To convert to % = crude birth rate – crude death rate/ 10
Rate of natural increase only looks at births and deaths.
Rate of Population growth looks at both birth and deaths AND migration.
Whether you use the rate of natural increase or population growth will depend on whether or not you want to
consider the impact of migration (rate of population growth) or just births and deaths (Rate of natural increase).
Rate of natural increase has decline significantly in the last half century:
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