Demography and economic emergence of sub-saharan Africa
Académie royale de Belgique
Date de publication
L'Académie en poche

Demography and economic emergence of sub-saharan Africa

Académie royale de Belgique

L'Académie en poche


  • Aide EAN13 : 9782803107551
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About 35 years later than in the other less developed countries, high
mortality and fertility levels have started to decline in the 48 countries of
sub-Saharan Africa (SSA). The late completion of the demographic transition in
the region, its slow pace, and its population growth rates over 2.5% per year
for more than 50 years, render the SSA demographic trajectories very different
from the transitions experienced elsewhere in the world.

With the onset of the fertility decline and better economic performance in SSA
between 2000 and 2014, most SSA countries thought that they would be able to
capture a first demographic dividend and become emerging economies – a process
that many East and Southeast Asian countries achieved between 1970 and 2000.
However, available data indicates that since the 1960s the rapid population
growth in SSA has had negative effects on the growth of its GDP per capita.
Moreover, so far there are only fourteen SSA countries, representing 20% of
the SSA population, that meet the initial conditions needed to benefit from a
first demographic dividend. This volume analyzes the challenges that the SSA
countries will need to address in order to replicate the East and Southeast
Asian economic miracle. The majority of the SSA countries are at a critical
stage in their development. Indeed, the next decades will determine whether or
not the SSA countries will be able to accelerate their demographic transition,
capture a first demographic dividend, and become emerging economies.

John F. May is a Research Professor at the Schar School of Policy and
Government, George Mason University, Arlington, VA, USA. He earned his
Doctorate in Demography from the University of Paris-V (Sorbonne). He is a
specialist of population policies and the demography of sub-Saharan Africa and
has worked on population and development projects around the world for most
international organizations.

Jean-Pierre Guengant is Emeritus Director of Research at the Research
Institute for Development (IRD), presently attached to the University of
Paris-I (Panthéon-Sorbonne). He holds a Doctorate in Development Economics
from the University of Clermont-Ferrand, France. His recent work focusses on
the demographic dividend and the emergence of sub-Saharan Africa.
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