Articles

The potential demography: a tool for evaluating differences among countries in the European Union

Gian Carlo Blangiardo, Stefania M.L. Rimoldi

Abstract


Potential demography is grounded in the theoretical assumption that the future is similar to an economic good. The present paper retrieves Hersch’s original studies on potential demography (1940-1950), reviews the methodology to take account of the data currently available and suggests alternative (or at least complementary) tools to describe the structure and dynamics of populations of different countries. It also enables an evaluation of countries’ ability to meet their financial commitments, commensurate with how much “future” a population owns and how much it creates in any given year. Using the framework of potential demography, one can calculate both the demographic asset of a country and the dimensions of the components that contribute to, form, and maintain it annually. Regarding the annual balance between production and consumption of years of life, some countries show seriously critical values in order to maintain their asset over coming years. This reflects on their ability to deal with their financial commitments.

Gian Carlo BLANGIARDO, Professor of Demography, Dipartimento di Statistica e Metodi Quantitativi, Università degli Studi di Milano Bicocca, via Bicocca degli Arcimboldi 8, Milan, Italy. E-mail: giancarlo.blangiardo@unimib.it.

Stefania M.L. RIMOLDI, Risercher, Dipartimento di Statistica e Metodi Quantitativi, Università degli Studi di Milano Bicocca, via Bicocca degli Arcimboldi 8, Milan, Italy. E-mail: tefania.rimoldi@unimib.it.


Keywords


Potential demography; demographic asset; demographic balance

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ISSN: 2035-5556

Reg. Tribunale di Roma n. 3321/54