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Japan's ageing society

15-12-2020

Japan is aging fast. Its 'super-aged' society is the oldest in the world: 28.7 % of the population are 65 or older, with women forming the majority. The country is also home to a record 80 000 centenarians. By 2036, people aged 65 and over will represent a third of the population. Since 2011, the Japanese population has also been shrinking: it is a rare case of large country whose overall population is becoming smaller in prosperous and peaceful times. Japan's population is expected to drop from ...

Japan is aging fast. Its 'super-aged' society is the oldest in the world: 28.7 % of the population are 65 or older, with women forming the majority. The country is also home to a record 80 000 centenarians. By 2036, people aged 65 and over will represent a third of the population. Since 2011, the Japanese population has also been shrinking: it is a rare case of large country whose overall population is becoming smaller in prosperous and peaceful times. Japan's population is expected to drop from 127 million in 2015 to 88 million by 2065. Japan's demographic crisis is the consequence of the combination of two elements: a high life expectancy and a low fertility rate. In 2018, Japan had the second highest life expectancy in the world. Meanwhile, since the 1970s the country has failed to raise its fertility rate to the replacement level. The working culture, a deterioration of employment opportunities for young men and the traditional gender division of labour are possible explanations for this trend. The consequences of the country's aging and shrinking population include economic crisis, budgetary challenges, pressure on job markets and depopulation of rural areas. The silver economy is meanwhile flourishing and Japan is at the forefront of robot development to face a declining labour force and to take care of its elderly. The government's efforts to address the demographic crisis have yet to succeed however, and immigration has been limited. Tokyo is engaged in global health cooperation and succeeded in incorporating the concept of human security in the sustainable development goals. It has also been active in international cooperation on ageing, with a focus on the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) region. The EU's own ageing society is not far behind Japan. It could benefit from learning from Japan's experience, and cooperating on all aspects relating to demographic challenges, including on 'agetech': technology making comfortable longevity accessible to all.

Demography on the European agenda: Strategies for tackling demographic decline

02-06-2020

The EU faces a number of demographic challenges such as ageing, a declining birth rate and depopulation in some of its regions. The EU represents an ever-shrinking proportion of the world population, at just 6.9 % today (down from 13.5 % in 1960), and is projected to fall further to just 4.1 % by the end of this century. This is explained by the low fertility rates as the numbers of children being born has fallen from an EU-28 average of around 2.5 children per woman in 1960, to a little under 1.6 ...

The EU faces a number of demographic challenges such as ageing, a declining birth rate and depopulation in some of its regions. The EU represents an ever-shrinking proportion of the world population, at just 6.9 % today (down from 13.5 % in 1960), and is projected to fall further to just 4.1 % by the end of this century. This is explained by the low fertility rates as the numbers of children being born has fallen from an EU-28 average of around 2.5 children per woman in 1960, to a little under 1.6 today. This is far below the 2.1 births per woman considered necessary to maintain a stable population in the long term. Ageing is also another population trend in the EU. Due to advances in medicine and quality of life, the average life expectancy the EU has increased considerably and now stands at about 81 years on average. Demography matters. The economy, labour market, healthcare, pensions, regional development, and election results – all are driven by demography. EU Member States have their own strategies and policies in order to counteract demographic decline. The EU also has an auxiliary role when it comes to tackling demographic challenges. Nevertheless, the EU has limited legal powers when it comes to dealing with issues that are related to demography. The coronavirus epidemic also has an impact on demography. Covid-19 has caused many deaths of elderly people. Certain EU regions have been affected more than others from the spread of the coronavirus. Studies suggest that coronavirus has a considerable impact on EU population trends (such as number of deaths per country, reduction of life expectancy and family planning). Both the European Parliament and the European Committee of the Regions are preparing their own reports and opinions on issues that are related to demography.

Demographic outlook for the European Union 2020

02-03-2020

Demography matters. The economy and the labour market, but also social protection, intergenerational fairness and healthcare, the environment, food and nutrition are all driven by demography. The population of EU countries has grown substantially – by around a quarter since 1960 – and currently it stands at almost 450 million. The numbers are now beginning to stagnate however and are expected to decline from around the middle of the century. With the world population having risen still more substantially ...

Demography matters. The economy and the labour market, but also social protection, intergenerational fairness and healthcare, the environment, food and nutrition are all driven by demography. The population of EU countries has grown substantially – by around a quarter since 1960 – and currently it stands at almost 450 million. The numbers are now beginning to stagnate however and are expected to decline from around the middle of the century. With the world population having risen still more substantially and growth continuing, the EU represents a shrinking proportion of the global population. The EU population is also ageing dramatically, as life expectancy increases and fertility rates fall below past levels. This has serious implications across a range of areas including the economy, healthcare and pensions. Free movement within the EU and migration from third countries also play an important role in shaping demography in individual Member States and regions. The 'in-focus' section of this year's edition of the demographic outlook examines food and nutrition-related demographic challenges. It shows that, even if improving food quality and healthier eating habits lead to higher life expectancy, the EU still has to tackle the harmful consequences and prevent the causes of diet-related chronic conditions, such as obesity, diabetes and cardiovascular disease. This paper is the third in a series produced by EPRS on the demographic outlook for the European Union.

Demographic outlook for the European Union 2019

03-06-2019

This paper is the second in a series that EPRS is producing on the demographic outlook for the European Union (EU). Demography matters. The economy, labour market, healthcare, pensions, the environment, intergenerational fairness and election results – they are all driven by demography. The EU has seen its population grow substantially – by around a quarter since 1960 – and currently stands at over 500 million people. However, it is now beginning to stagnate, before its expected decline from around ...

This paper is the second in a series that EPRS is producing on the demographic outlook for the European Union (EU). Demography matters. The economy, labour market, healthcare, pensions, the environment, intergenerational fairness and election results – they are all driven by demography. The EU has seen its population grow substantially – by around a quarter since 1960 – and currently stands at over 500 million people. However, it is now beginning to stagnate, before its expected decline from around the middle of the century. With the world population having risen still more substantially and growth continuing, the EU represents a shrinking proportion of this population. The EU population is also ageing dramatically, as life expectancy increases and fertility rates fall below their levels in the past. This has serious implications across a range of areas including the economy, healthcare and pensions. Free movement within the EU and migration from third countries also play an important role in shaping demography in individual Member States and regions. The 'in-focus' section of this year's edition looks at pensions. It highlights that, whilst national reforms have largely successfully addressed issues around the sustainability of pension systems, concerns about the adequacy of pensions, particularly in the future, still remain.

Living in the EU: Demography

30-04-2019

Important effects of the ageing of its population will influence the future of the European Union (EU). The population is dramatically ageing, driven both by significant increases in life expectancy and by lower fertility rates than in the past. Population growth is therefore slowing down, along with an increasing old-age dependency ratio. Free movement within the EU, in particular east-west movement of EU citizens, has increased, reducing the population of some Member States, while increasing that ...

Important effects of the ageing of its population will influence the future of the European Union (EU). The population is dramatically ageing, driven both by significant increases in life expectancy and by lower fertility rates than in the past. Population growth is therefore slowing down, along with an increasing old-age dependency ratio. Free movement within the EU, in particular east-west movement of EU citizens, has increased, reducing the population of some Member States, while increasing that of others. These changes have serious implications across a range of areas, including the economy, labour market, healthcare and pensions. Hence, they deserve in-depth analysis.

Tendencias demográficas en las regiones de la Unión Europea

29-01-2019

La Unión Europea ha experimentado un crecimiento sustancial de su población —de en torno a un cuarto en las cinco décadas y media transcurridas desde 1960— hasta alcanzar el nivel actual de más de 500 millones de habitantes. No obstante, en la actualidad esta población está aumentando demasiado despacio e incluso está previsto que a largo plazo se reduzca. Es probable que las cuestiones demográficas ejerzan un impacto considerable en la sociedad de la Unión. La mayoría de los modelos empleados para ...

La Unión Europea ha experimentado un crecimiento sustancial de su población —de en torno a un cuarto en las cinco décadas y media transcurridas desde 1960— hasta alcanzar el nivel actual de más de 500 millones de habitantes. No obstante, en la actualidad esta población está aumentando demasiado despacio e incluso está previsto que a largo plazo se reduzca. Es probable que las cuestiones demográficas ejerzan un impacto considerable en la sociedad de la Unión. La mayoría de los modelos empleados para analizar las tendencias demográficas sugieren que, en los próximos años, la población de la Unión seguirá envejeciendo como consecuencia de unos niveles de fertilidad sistemáticamente bajos y el aumento de la longevidad. Si bien la inmigración puede desempeñar un papel importante en las dinámicas de la población de numerosos Estados miembros de la Unión, es improbable que pueda revertir la tendencia actual de envejecimiento de la población. La evolución demográfica tiene diversas implicaciones para las regiones europeas. Algunas de ellas, especialmente las rurales y aisladas, están experimentando un considerable descenso del número de habitantes. Esta situación puede exacerbar el declive económico al que ya se enfrentan dichas regiones y aumentar de este modo la brecha entre regiones ricas y pobres. Así pues, la demografía también afecta gravemente a la cohesión social, económica y territorial de la Unión. Por otro lado, la elevada concentración de población en los centros urbanos también trae consigo algunas consecuencias negativas, como la contaminación y la falta de una vivienda asequible. Las tendencias migratorias recientes han mejorado el equilibrio demográfico en varias regiones de la Unión; dicho esto, la inmigración afecta a las regiones de la Unión de manera desigual. Los Fondos Estructurales y de Inversión Europeos se emplean principalmente para impulsar el crecimiento económico en las regiones europeas, pero pueden servir asimismo, combinándolos con otros fondos de la Unión, para atajar problemas derivados de los retos demográficos. La Unión también utiliza una serie de instrumentos para abordar las cuestiones relacionadas con la inmigración en sus territorios más afectados por este fenómeno.

Las regiones en declive : un nuevo paradigma demográfico y territorial

16-06-2008

La Unión Europea es, en la actualidad, la parte del mundo, junto con Rusia y Japón, que debería registrar el crecimiento demográfico más bajo en los próximos años. Aparte de lo que esto representa en materia de política exterior, también repercute en la evolución regional y local. Por tanto, los fenómenos demográficos contemporáneos afectan a toda la política de cohesión económica, social y territorial. La aparición de un declive demográfico a escala de regiones enteras se suma, y a veces se confunde ...

La Unión Europea es, en la actualidad, la parte del mundo, junto con Rusia y Japón, que debería registrar el crecimiento demográfico más bajo en los próximos años. Aparte de lo que esto representa en materia de política exterior, también repercute en la evolución regional y local. Por tanto, los fenómenos demográficos contemporáneos afectan a toda la política de cohesión económica, social y territorial. La aparición de un declive demográfico a escala de regiones enteras se suma, y a veces se confunde, con la problemática de las disparidades de desarrollo, que tradicionalmente ha ocupado un lugar central en la política de cohesión de la Unión Europea. En opinión de los autores, esta situación debe llevarnos a repensar dicha política en todas sus dimensiones: económica, social, medioambiental y, sobre todo, territorial. Las respuestas al problema del decrecimiento demográfico pasarían así por la implantación de una gobernanza multiescala que implique niveles de intervención tanto suprarregionales (Unión Europea, Estados), intrarregionales (autoridades locales, aglomeraciones) y transregionales (espacios fronterizos, márgenes internos).

Autor externo

Claude Grasland, Ronan Ysebaert, Bernard Corminboeuf, Nicolas Gaubert, Nicolas Lambert, Isabelle Salmon (UMS RIATE - Université Paris Diderot) ; Myriam Baron, Sophie Baudet-Michel, Estelle Ducom, Dominique Rivière, Camille Schmoll, Christine Zanin (Géographie-cités - CNRS Paris-A) ; Jérome Gensel, Jean-Marc Vincent, Christine Plumejeaud (LIG - Université Joseph Fourier) ; Gilles Van Hamme (IGEAT - Université Libre de Bruxelles) ;Einar Holm, Magnus Strömgren (Université d’Umeå) ; Pasquale Coppola, Alessia Salaris (Université de Naples) ; Octavian Groza, Ionel Muntele, George Turcanasu et Oana Stoleriu (CUGUAT – TIGRIS - Université Alexandru Ioan Cuza)

FOREST FIRES: causes and contributing factors in Europe

29-02-2008

Autor externo

Samuela Bassi, Marianne Kettunen (IEEP) Institute for European Environmental Policy London, United Kingdom

The Future of Young Farmers in the EU

01-04-2000

The study provides an analysis of the current situation of young farmers within the EU and in six “first-wave” candidate countries for EU membership (Cyprus, Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Poland and Slovenia).It describes the problems faced by young farmers at present. This description is based on statistics, and on opinion provided by a large number of sources contacted and researched, both at EU and at national level.

The study provides an analysis of the current situation of young farmers within the EU and in six “first-wave” candidate countries for EU membership (Cyprus, Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Poland and Slovenia).It describes the problems faced by young farmers at present. This description is based on statistics, and on opinion provided by a large number of sources contacted and researched, both at EU and at national level.

Autor externo

Ross Gordon Consultants sprl, Belgium

Toward a European Policy for Mountain Regions

01-07-1999

To maximise the potential of the mountainous regions of Europe the framework of current European policies in this sector must be improved. The report advocates an integrated and flexible approach, making it possible to adapt to the diversity of these areas, taking account of their differing economic, environmental and sociological aspects.

To maximise the potential of the mountainous regions of Europe the framework of current European policies in this sector must be improved. The report advocates an integrated and flexible approach, making it possible to adapt to the diversity of these areas, taking account of their differing economic, environmental and sociological aspects.

Autor externo

International Center for Alpine Environments (ICALPE), France

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