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Demographic Transition Model and Development

Link between stages of the Demographic Transition Model and the level of development

The Demographic Transition Model graphs Birth rate, Death rate and Natural Increase. The word demographic simply means population, and transition relates to change. Therefore this model proposes what should happen to a population over time and how it should CHANGE.

If birth rate is greater than death rate the population will increase. If the death rate is greater than birth rate the population will naturally decrease. The greater the difference the greater the rate of Natural Increase. The rate of Natural Increase is much higher in developing countries of the world, and many countries in MEDCs are actually experiencing population decline.

The demographic transition model is set out in 5 stages and was based on the United Kingdom. These can be seen below.

DTM and development

Generally, most countries would progress through the demographic transition model as they develop.  It should be clear that;

LICs have populations typical of stages 1 and 2 that are growing rapidly with low life expectancies
NEEs have populations typical of stage 3 where birth rates are falling and growth is slower, and people are living longer
HICs have populations at stages 4 and 5, with very slow growing populations or populations in decline.

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