5th CIST conference, November 18th-20th, 2020 - Campus Condorcet Campus Paris-Aubervilliers

Calls > Session L

Session L

Demographic Transitions and Territories. Historical and Contemporary Perspectives

Facilitators: Mélanie BOURGUIGNON, Yoann DOIGNON, Thierry EGGERICKX & Jean-Paul SANDERSON (Centre de recherche en démographie, UCLouvain, Belgium)

Since the 18th century, a succession of major socio-demographic changes has affected populations: mortality and fertility have declined sharply, traditional marriage patterns have diversified with the emergence of unmarried cohabitation and divorce; out-of-wedlock fertility has increased since procreation is no longer a necessary part of marriage, and migration movements have intensified around the world.

Theoretical frameworks, such as the first or second demographic transition, situate these changes in a process where populations move from an old demographic regime to a new one. All these transformations are mainly explained in terms of mechanisms of adaptation and diffusion in which the temporal and territorial dimensions play a considerable role.

While transitions gradually lead to a standardisation of socio-demographic behaviours, significant differences remain between territories, even today, especially at the local level. Not all territories begin their demographic transitions at the same time; the duration and intensity of transitions can also vary between territories. These local disparities are primarily explained by the economic, political, social and environmental characteristics specific to each territory.

The papers in this session will address socio-demographic transitions from a territorial perspective, at an aggregate or disaggregated level, and will highlight the temporal dimension of these changes. They will explain the reasons why some territories are pioneers and why some others are stragglers in term of these processes of transition. They will also address issues such as the spatial distribution of transitions, the (dis-)continuity and (dis‑)similarities between demographic transitions, as well as the impact of migrations. Papers may also include a discussion of the usefulness and limitations of demographic transition theories.

Indicative bibliographical references

Bonneuil N., 1997, Transformation of the French Demographic Landscape, 1806-1906, Oxford–New York, Clarendon Press–Oxford University Press.
Casterline J. B. (dir.), 2001, Diffusion Processes and Fertility Transition: Selected Perspectives, Washington (DC), National Academy Press.
Coale A. J., Cotts Watkins S., 1986, The Decline of Fertility in Europe, Princeton, Princeton University Press.
Cleland J., Wilson C., 1987, “Demand Theories of the Fertility Transition: An Iconoclastic View”, Population Studies, 41(1), p. 5-30.
Knodel J., van de Walle E., 1979, “Lessons from the Past: Policy Implications of Historical Fertility Studies”, Population and Development Review, 5(2), p. 217-245.
Lesthaeghe R., Lopez-Gay A., 2013, “Spatial Continuities and Discontinuities in Two Successive Demographic Transitions: Spain and Belgium, 1880-2010”, Demographic Research, 28(4), p. 77-136.
Lesthaeghe R., Neels K., 2002, “From the First to the Second Demographic Transition: An InterprÉtation of the Spatial Continuity of Demographic Innovation in France, Belgium and Switzerland”, European Journal of Population, 18(4), p. 325-360.
Notestein F. W., 1945, “Population: The Long View”, in P. T. Schultz (dir.), Food for the World, Chicago, University of Chicago Press, p. 36-57.
Van de Kaa D., Lesthaeghe R., 1986, “Twee demografische transities?”, in D. Van de Kaa & R. Lesthaeghe (dir.), Bevolking: groei en krimp, Coll. “Mens en maatschappij”, n° 61, Deventer, Van Loghum Slaterus, p. 9-24.
Vitali A., Aassve A., Lappegård T., 2015, “Diffusion of Childbearing within Cohabitation”, Demography, 52(2), p. 355-377.



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