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Asia-Pacific Population Journal. 2007 Apr; 22(1):3-7.While the science of demography addresses the whole of the human population, substantive demographic research is most often focused on populations with common characteristics. For the last six decades the nation state has been the social unit that has dominated demographic research. The reasons for this focus make perfect sense. Nations define their populations in terms of citizenship and define the ways in which people will be identified in any effort to count the numbers. They have the authority, the interest and the resources to carry out collections of information about members of these defined populations. As members of the United Nations they collaborate with other nations to develop the methodological and technical tools used to analyse national population numbers in ways that are relevant to state policies and actions. In short, the nation is the foundation unit for understanding human population composition and growth. Global population numbers are estimated by compiling the information collected by nations. Interest in populations of units smaller than the nation also relies on national statistical collections and national definitions of component populations, but for most users of data the focus is on the nation, and not the units beyond or below that political entity. (excerpt)
POPULATION GEOGRAPHY. 1989 Jun-Dec; 11(1-2):86-96.This paper surveys the contributions of the International Geographic Union (IGU) and the International Cartographic Association (ICA) to the field of population studies over the past 3 decades. Reviewing the various focal themes of conferences sponsored by the organizations since the 1960s, the author examines the evolution of population studies in IGU and ICA. During the 1960s, IGU began holding symposia addressing the issue of population pressure on the physical and social resource in developing countries. However, it wasn't until 1972, at a meeting in Edmonton, Canada, when IGU first addressed the issue of migration. But since then, migration has remained on the the key concerns of IGU. In 1978, the union hosted a symposium on Population Redistribution in Africa -- the first in a series of conferences focusing on the issue of migration. As an outgrowth of migration, the IGU also began addressing the related issue of population education. The interest in migration has continued through the 1980s. In addition to studies of regional migration, the IGU has also focused on conceptual issues such as migrant labor, environmental concerns, women and migration, and urbanization. In 1984, IGU began cooperating with ICA in the areas of census cartography and population cartography. The author concludes his review of IGU and ICA activities by discussing the emerging trends in population studies. The author foresees a more refined study of migration and more sophisticated population mapping, the result of better study techniques and the use of computer technology.
Report prepared for UNFPA/UN Interregional Consultative Group of Experts on the World Population Plan of Action, Geneva, 1975. 25 pAdd to my documents.