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UN Chronicle. 1990 Mar; 27(1): p..The Year will highlight global awareness of family issues and the improvement of national mechanisms directed at tackling serious family-related problems. Also on 8 December, the Assembly commemorated (44/57) the 20th anniversary of the proclamation in 1969 of the Declaration on Social Progress and Development. The Assembly asked (44/70) for increased international co-operation to implement the World Programme of Action for the UN Decade of Disabled Persons 1983-1992. Margaret J. Anstee, Director-General of the UN Office at Vienna, warned that by the end of the century, the number of disabled people would have risen to 30 to 40 per cent of the population of some countries. (excerpt)
In: A census of one billion people. Papers for International Seminar on China's 1982 Population Census, edited by Li Chengrui. Boulder, Colorado, Westview Press, 1986. 37-52.This paper examines how the 1982 China census met the standards prevalent in the world at large and formulated by the international community into recommendations under UN guidance. It also examines to what extent the China census met the recommendations, what alternatives were adopted and why, and what methods it used to carry them out. China's 1982 census met the criteria of individual enumeration, universality, simultaneity, and defined periodicity. The 1982 census was a register-based de jure census in which the field interview and its checks determined the final content of census information. It was necesary to restrict the number of census questions to fewer than would have been desirable. The questionnaire included 5 household and 13 individual topics. Questions on live births and deaths in the household since 1981 were included, although not generally recommended. Age data is unusually accurate due to people's awareness of what animal sign they were born under. Housing questions were not asked in this census, but may be included in the next census. Sampling was used only in the small-scale post-enumeration survey. In China, the administrative network is so complete and reaches down to so small a unit that no further subdivision for census purposes is needed at all. A most unconventional feature of the censuses of China has been the virtually complete absence of mapping. An extensive program of 4887 pilot censuses ensured the success of the full census. The publicity effort involved 2-way communication from the national office to the public and back. The issue of confidentiality was felt to be problematical in China and best solved by not asking questions that people would be reluctant to answer. The method of enumeration differed greatly from the usual ones in that it centered on enumeration stations with home visits used to a lesser extent. Several questions were precoded, but the enumerator had to write in the number as well as circle the correct item. 10% advance tabulations were made for all units and found to be very representative.
In: Third Asian and Pacific Population Conference (Colombo, September 1982). Selected papers. Bangkok, Thailand, Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific, 1984. 9-40. (Asian Population Studies Series No. 58)This report summarizes the recent demographic situation and considers prospective trends and their development implications among the 39 members and associate members of the Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP). It presents data on the following: size, growth, and distribution of the population; age and sex structure; fertility and marriage; mortality; international migration; growth and poverty; food and nutrition; households and housing; primary health care; education; the working-age population; family planning; the elderly; and population distribution. Despite improvements in the frequency and quality of demographic data collected in recent years, big gaps continue to exist in knowledge of the demographic situation in the ESCAP region. Available evidence suggests that the population growth rate of the ESCAP region declined between 1970 and 1980, as compared with the preceding decade, but that its rate of decline was slow. Within this overall picture, there is wide variation, with the most developed countries having annual growth rates around 1% and some of the least developed countries having a figure near 3%. The main factors associated with the high growth rates are the past high levels of fertility resulting in young age structures and continuing high fertility in some countries, notably in middle south Asia. The population of countries in the ESCAP region is expected to grow from 2.5 billion in 1980, to 2.9 billion in 1990, and to 3.4 billion persons by the year 2000. This massive growth in numbers, which will be most pronounced in Middle South Asia, will occur despite projected continuing moderation in annual population growth rates. Fertility is expected to continue its downward trend, assuming a more widespread and equitable distribution of health, education, and family planning services. Mortality is expected to decline further from its current levels, where life expectancy is often at or around 50 years. In several countries, more than 10 in every 100 babies born die before their 1st birthday. The extension of primary health care services is seen as the key to reducing this figure. Rapid population growth and poverty tend to reinforce each other. Low income, lack of education, and high infant and child mortality contribute to high fertility, which in turn is associated with high rates of natural increase. High rates of natural increase feed back to depress socioeconomic development. High population growth rates and their correlates of young age structures and heavy concentrations of persons in the nonproductive ages tend to depress production and burden government expenditure with high costs for social overhead needs. Rapid population growth emerges as an important factor in the persistence of chronic undernutrition and malnutrition. It increases the magnitude of the task of improving the educational system and exacerbates the problem of substandard housing that is widely prevalent throughout Asia.