ABSTRACT. – Demographic Risks.The first part of the study clarifies the concept of "risk", in both social realm in general and demography in particular. The meaning of the notion assumes the occurrence of an event with negative consequences. This implies that, besides evaluating the likelihood of the event to occur, one has to produce a judgment that values its consequences in negative terms as well. This is not only difficult in social sciences, but also... risky! The analysis of three processes in the evolution of the present day populations follow: the demographic growth, the decline in fertility, and the ageing of the population, and the risks associated with every of them are examined. The main conclusion of the study is that the risks generated by these processes have been and are generally overstated. The author argues for a balanced assessment of the magnitude of the consequences and for confidence in humans' capacity to countervail those features that are considered negative.
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