Compelled to Work for Wages: The Story of Old-Age Wage Labour Participation in India

The well-being of the elderly in any society is important as improved health facilities and policies have made the elderly population among one of the fastest growing demographic groups in the world today. In India the elderly population has grown from about 19.8 million in 1951 to 100 million in 2011 and the projections indicate that the number of persons older than sixty years is likely to increase to 198 million by 2030 (Government of India, 2008; ET, 2012). The growing share of the elderly population may have severe consequence in a country like India where the credit and financial markets are not adequately developed.

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Targeted to Whom? Stipend Programs, Inequality and School Attainment in Rural Bangladesh

Improving educational attainment is important for achieving population targets and meeting economic development goals in low-income countries. Over the past few decades, targeted stipend programs have been used to improve the school attainment in poor populations in countries as diverse as Turkey, Mexico, and Brazil. The principal behind these programs is simple: cash or in-kind incentives are provided to targeted poor households conditional upon children’s school attendance. Evaluations of stipend programs show positive impacts across contexts: stipend programs improve enrollment and attainment and – in some cases – delay the start of marriage and childbearing. Continue reading

Children’s Economic Well-Being in Same-Sex Mother Families

While there is increasing support for same-sex parent families and recent state-wide legalization of marriages to same-sex couples in the U.S., there is only a small body of research that examines the economic, academic, social, or psychological well-being of children living in same-sex parent families (Manning et al. 2014).  There are increasing numbers of children residing in same-sex couple parent families, but a key constraint has been that there are relatively few data sets with ample numbers of children residing in same-sex parent families.

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When Deaths Exceed Births: Natural Decrease in Europe and the United States

Natural decrease occurs when deaths in an area exceed births. If such natural decrease is prolonged, there is a substantial risk of population loss. Seventeen European nations had more people dying than being born between 2000 and 2009, including several of Europe’s most populous countries. The United States, in contrast, has always seen births exceed deaths by a substantial margin. Our research focuses on the prevalence and dynamics of natural decrease in subareas of Europe and the United States in the first decade of the twenty-first century. We found that 58 percent of the 1,391 counties of Europe (NUTS3 units) had more deaths than births during that period compared to just 28 percent of the 3,137 U.S. counties. (See Figure 1)

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Call for Abstracts – PopFest 2016: The 24th Annual Population Postgraduate Conference

PopFest is an annual Population Studies conference for postgraduate students organised by fellow postgraduates. It provides an excellent opportunity to bring together researchers from various Social Science disciplines such as Demography, Human Geography, Urban and Landscape Planning, Sociology, Social Anthropology, Social Statistics, Politics and other related fields. PopFest not only attracts very talented researchers from across the UK but also from around Europe making it a successful platform for friendly, international networking. Therefore, we highly encourage overseas colleagues to join us and present their research and ideas in front of a very friendly, enthusiastic and open-minded international audience! Continue reading

Are We Really Getting Fatter? Evidence From England, 1992-2013

One in four adults in England are currently estimated to obese. This figure has tripled since the 1980s and follows similar trends internationally. This is important since excess body weight is associated with multiple adverse health outcomes including Type II Diabetes, Stroke, Osteoarthritis and Depression. This places considerable burden on health services costing the NHS over £5 billion annually. If trends continue, this figure is set to increase.

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Should the UK Government Expand Pro-Marriage Tax Relief?

In April 2015, David Cameron’s government implemented legislation to promote marriage by providing tax relief for low-income married couples. While nearly four million couples could potentially claim the benefit of around £212 per year, it has been difficult to obtain and relatively few have done so. Now the government has plans to expand these tax benefits to more married couples in order to “send a strong signal that we back marriage.” (Cameron 2014) This raises the question of whether marriage, compared to cohabitation, does indeed boost well-being, and whether incentives to marry need to be expanded.

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On the Activities Providing Access to Quantitative Surveys for Social Research

Providing opportunities for secondary analysis and for the replication of studies, the sharing of research data is paramount to the social sciences. Facilitating the access to data has become a political objective, and more and more journals and funding agencies are adopting a data availability policy. In this context, it is useful to have insights into the challenges and potential benefits of ensuring that survey data are made widely available.

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The Future of Estimating Housing Requirements. How Can Demographic Forecasting Help Plan for Housing?

I would like to outline four themes that may be helpful to promote future work on housing requirements in the UK. First, what is the role of forecasting within planning? I think a two part formulation is a useful guide to what planners need. Forecasters should predict that part of the future which planners don’t control, so that they can concentrate on what they can control; and forecasters should predict the consequences of a plan. In our context, the ‘trend-based’ official projections encapsulate business as usual without the impact of future-changing plans, and in particular deal with fertility, mortality and international migration which are considered outside the planners’ control. Continue reading

Objective and Subjective Health Measures; What do They Tell us?

A variety of measures have been used to examine individuals’ health status. The most frequently used measures are subjective ones, such as self-rated health (SRH) and self-perceived dependence in activities of daily living (ADL). Objective measures and biomarkers are rarely used in this context. The introduction of such measures may provide an important complement to SRH and similar indicators. Recently objective measures such as grip strength and lung function gained popularity. SRH and grip strength are static indicators, capturing deviations from a norm perceived as healthy.

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