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.

Endgame 2050 poster
4 February 2021

Endgame 2050 Live Panel Discussion

​The important new documentary ENDGAME 2050 provides a sobering glimpse into the bleak future we are headed towards unless we embrace the transformative change required to turn the tide on our biggest environmental crises. Join us as for a virtual live-screening of the population segment of the film, followed by a panel discussion with leading experts!

Read more

22 January 2021

Population and reproductive rights - our new briefing

In a submission to the UK parliament, Population Matters calls for greater honesty about the population benefits of reproductive rights - and warns of the threat posed by nationalistic population policies.

Read more

14 January 2021

Humanity headed towards ‘ghastly future’: Urgent warning from top scientists

An important new study warns that the world is failing to grasp the gravity of our environmental crises, and that without urgent action on the underlying causes, population and consumption growth, we face catastrophic mass extinction, climate disruption, and human suffering.

Read more

Submission on reproductive rights and sustainable development - Dec 2020

Briefings and submissions

Fully referenced 8-page submission following a call for evidence regarding the relationship between Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights and sustainable development. The call for evidence was made by the UK's All-Parliamentary Group on Population, Development and Reproductive Health

Download
Hand holding branch
18 December 2020

What COVID-19 has taught us about our relationship with nature

As 2020 draws to a close, humanity is reflecting on a particularly difficult year. The slow but sure roll-out of COVID-19 vaccination programmes presents a light at the end of the tunnel, yet new pandemics are just around the corner unless we confront our broken relationship with nature. Population Matters Senior Communications Officer, Olivia Nater, reviews the evidence.

Read more

25 November 2020

The Shadow Pandemic: Violence Against Women

One in three women around the world experience physical or sexual violence. On the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, Population Matters Campaigner Katrina Dixon takes a sobering look at one of humanity’s oldest diseases.

Read more

Biden 2020 flag
10 November 2020

Biden’s victory: What does it mean for women’s rights and the environment?

Sexual and reproductive health and rights and the environment saw several significant setbacks under the Trump administration. Now that Joe Biden and running mate Kamala Harris have won the US presidential election, what is likely to change? Senior Communications Officer Olivia Nater takes a look at key international policy issues.

Read more

Population Matters Magazine - Autumn 2020

Population Matters Magazine

Summarises our World Population Day activities on population and the UN Sustainable Development Goals, explains how we're working to influence the new global agreement on biodiversity, features an interview with childfree filmmaker Maxine Trump, and more.

Download
Power station
10 October 2020

Can we shrink our energy footprint?

A new study suggests we can reduce global energy consumption by 75% and still lead comfortable lives. To achieve that, the authors say we need "radical action on all fronts", including addressing vast disparities in consumption across the world. Can we do it?

Read more

David Attenborough on Easter Island
7 October 2020

Attenborough film: Saving our planet requires ending population growth

David Attenborough's 'A Life On Our Planet' highlights the rampant destruction of nature caused by human population growth and unsustainable consumption, as well as the positive and urgently needed actions we must take to save our one and only planet. Population Matters Director Robin Maynard reviews the film.

Read more