Population Matters

Past events – 2007

Past events – 2007

Royal Statistical Society: Environmentally sustainable population — why the statistics matter

Held at the offices of the Royal Statistical Society on 19th April 2007. (View text and slides.)

Chair: Philip Turnbull, RSS

Speakers: Martin Desvaux PhD CPhys MInstP and Rosamund McDougall

Discussant: Professor David Coleman, Oxford University

Issues: Rosamund McDougall covered the ways in which population statistics are gathered globally and in the UK and how they are interpreted, used, and abused in policy formulation. She explored the reasons for persistent UK government failure to consider population policy as part of environmental strategy and suggested how this might change in the future. Martin Desvaux described population development since 10,000 BC and factors that controlled them. He discussed how ecological footprint statistics could be used to assess sustainable population sizes. Possible scenarios were examined to underline the challenges facing the development of sustainable populations.