Population and Development

Population and development issues are inextricably linked. The world’s poorest areas often have the highest fertility rates. It’s a vicious cycle as poverty can fuel rapid population growth and rapid population growth can trap people in poverty. One in ten people still live on less than $2 a day.

Quality education, women’s empowerment, and universal access to modern contraception are powerful tools to reduce both poverty and high birth rates. When people are empowered to control their fertility and pursue careers, they choose small families.

Learn more about population and development here.

See our latest news stories and blog posts about development below.

Kenyan woman with baby
28 November 2019

Unmet needs: conversations with the women left behind

Population Matters' Director, Robin Maynard, summarises events at this month's Nairobi Summit on ICPD25, and recounts his experience of meeting young women and their families in Africa's largest slum and surrounding rural communities.

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Nairobi traffic
11 November 2019

Time to talk population again

This week, representatives from Population Matters will attend one of the most significant global meetings on population and development in recent years, the Nairobi Summit on ICPD 25. They will be taking the message that securing sustainable population is an essential goal and that failure to recognise this has led to the promised benefits for people and the environment being delivered too little, too late.

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Florence with kids
4 November 2019

Cracking knuckles and counting kids

Population Matters’ Campaigns and Projects Officer, Florence Blondel, reflects on her family life in Uganda, and what it tells us about population growth in her home country, and across much of Africa. She also identifies some positive changes coming.

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Woman with banner
1 October 2019

Four out of five women live in countries rated ‘poor’ or ‘very poor’ for gender equality

A major new report on the state of gender equality in 129 countries reveals that women and girls continue to be discriminated against across the globe, with four out of five women living in the lowest scoring countries.

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Toucan
20 September 2019

Wildlife conservation is incompatible with human population growth

A major analysis found that while wildlife can benefit from sustainable development and economic growth, continued human population growth is incompatible with conservation goals.

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City
12 September 2019

The World and the UN Must Reduce Population Growth

The United Nations' 17 Sustainable Development Goals imply that there is no longer any need to reduce global population growth, even though it is a serious problem that undermines most of the SDG targets. By adding a further SDG aimed at slowing the increase in population, the world could yet save the UN’s 2030 Agenda.

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fruit and veg
24 July 2019

Despite economic growth, billions won’t have enough fruit and veg by 2050

A new Lancet study analysing the gap between future fruit and vegetable supply and recommended consumption levels found that even under the most optimistic socioeconomic growth scenarios, there won’t be enough to go around by mid-century.

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SDGs what's missing
11 July 2019

Sustainable development needs sustainable population

On World Population Day 2019, Population Matters is bringing that critical message to London, New York and Lagos

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Lion
4 July 2019

Human population density main driver of nature loss in Africa

A new study reveals that rapid human population growth is the biggest driver of environmental degradation in African countries, highlighting the urgent need for greater investment in family planning as a pathway to achieving biodiversity and sustainable development targets.

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Woman drinking water
21 June 2019

No water, no life: Population growth and climate change are fuelling the water crisis

From India to sub-Saharan Africa to Britain, local water shortages are turning into a global water crisis due to population pressure and climate change.

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