This blog is intended to go along with Population: An Introduction to Concepts and Issues, by John R. Weeks, published by Cengage Learning. The latest edition is the 13th (it will be out in January 2020), but this blog is meant to complement any edition of the book by showing the way in which demographic issues are regularly in the news.

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Thursday, December 6, 2012

How Many of These Cities Can You Name?

Demographers at the UN Population Division project that between now and the middle of this century, almost all of the population growth in the world (more than two billion additional people) will show up in cities of developing countries. But not so much in the mega-cities; rather in the mid-sized cities, where opportunities may be less grand, but more accessible. Derek Thompson of Atlantic Cities has mined data put together by the Brookings Institution that makes this point. The analysis looked at per person growth in GDP in the 300 largest metropolitan areas of the world, so this was not simple population increase, but rather a combination of demographic and economic change.
The top 50 fastest-growing cities, by GDP per capita, are practically all in the developing Asian world. The top 18 are in China. The rest are in China, Indonesia (Jakarta), India (Chennai), and Australia (Perth).
Take a look at the interactive map and ask yourself if you've heard of Kunming, Tangshan, and Shenyang. These are among the cities growing the fastest in terms of population and economic opportunity.

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