Is technical demography becoming less relevant? Two decade review of published articles in selected demography journals

  • Joshua O. Akinyemi University of Ibadan
  • Sunday A Adedini University of the Witwatersrand
Keywords: Technical demography, demographic estimation, demographic techniques, mortality, fertility.


Background: In this paper, we reviewed development in the field of technical demography and empirically demonstrate that there has been a decline in the proportion of technical demographic studies published in the last two decades.Methods: All original articles published in nine demographic journals from Africa, Europe, Australia, Canada and United States were reviewed. We derived yearly aggregate for total number of articles and number of technical demographic papers from 1994 to 2015. We illustrated the trends in the proportion of technical demographic studies in a graph and also estimated the annual rate of decline using least square regression techniques.Results: A total of 4091 studies were published in 465 issues of the selected journals between 1994 and 2015 of which 371 (9.0%) were related to technical demography. The proportion of technical demographic papers declined gradually at an annual rate of 0.42% (CI= 0.29-0.62) between 1994 (12.0%) and 2015 (10.0%).Conclusion: Technical demography need to be strengthened in order to provide the critical data and evidence required to objectively monitor the post-2015 development goals.

Author Biographies

Joshua O. Akinyemi, University of Ibadan
Department of Epidemiology and Medical Statistics, College of Medicine
Sunday A Adedini, University of the Witwatersrand
Demography and Population Studies Programme, SChool of Public Health and Social Sciences