"The rich have money, the poor have children": exploring the fundamental causes of population growth in Africa

In cooperation with the Faculty of Economics and Business

11jun2018 17:00 - 18:30


In Africa, the rapid decrease in child mortality combined with a persistent high fertility cause a fast population growth. By 2100, the African population is predicted to quadruple, contributing to 80% of the expected four billion increase in worldwide population. This raises politico-economic challenges in the continent and beyond.

Africa’s demographic trends are unique, unexpected and the underlying causes are not well understood yet. Most current research examines access to public programs promoting family planning and child health. Instead, Pauline Rossi studies people’s private incentives to have children and to invest in their health.

Building upon the common saying that "children are poor people’s wealth", she addresses the following questions: What is specific to Africa in the way people make decisions on children? Does the prevalence of polygamy undermine population policies? Will fertility eventually drop in response to decreasing mortality? If yes, how to sustain progress in child survival? If no, what drives people’s preferences for large families?

This event wil be in English.

About the speaker

Pauline Rossi is an assistant professor of economics at the University of Amsterdam. She holds a PhD in economics from Paris School of Economics. Her research combines economic theories, micro-econometric methods and insights from other social sciences to explore household behavior in developing countries. She was recently awarded a Veni grant from NWO, the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research. 


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Location: SPUI25