Population Growth

Topics: Demography, Population, Total fertility rate Pages: 42 (12267 words) Published: June 26, 2013

and Development A Survey


in the Philippines:

Alejandro N. Herrin


This paper attempts to review the state of social science research on population and development relationships in. the Philippines with the aim of: (I) taking stock of what we know about such relationships as a guide to development planning, and (2) providing a basis for formulating recomII)endations to guide future research on the topic. The many population-related studies by independent investigators often contain reviews of past studies and suggestions for further research. In addition, efforts to bring together experts in various fields to focus on the status and directions of population-related research have also been made in the past (Concepcion 1966, 1969 ; Bulatao 1976). However, neither singly nor in combination do these efforts readily provide a unIfied view of the larger perspective needed for the development of a systematic knowledge base and a national research agenda specifically geared to the needs of policy-makers and planners in the 1980's. Professor of Economics, University of the Philippines


and Development




The increased concern about the role of population in development led many governments at the turn of the 1970's to adopt an official population poli~y whose main fo~us was the reduction of the rapid population growth. The main population program was the family planning program aimed at providing contraceptive technology to reduce fertility. The rapid declines in fertility noted in some countries have been attributed in varying extent to the impact of such programs. It was difficult, however, to assessthe impact such program has had on the population growth since the countries that had achieved the most rapid declines in fertility were also the ones which underwent rapid economic and social transformation. Among other factors, this led many governments to view rapid socioeconomic transformation as an important factor for the rapid and sustained decline in fertility. This view, further reinforced by discussions at international forums (e.g., the 1974 Bucharest Conference), has led to the recognition of the necessity of formulating population policies and programs as integral parts of the social and economic developmen~strategy . The present concern in th~ Philippines for such integration has been more clearly stated in the report of the Special Committee to Review the Philippine Population Program (1978). Noting that while some efforts have been taken to link the Philippine Population Program with other economic and social dimensions of development, the Committee found that, to a large extent, the. program has remained essentially a family planning program. Moreover, the Committee observed that whenever population was considered in the formulation of development plans, it was often treated. more as a demand variable than as a factor that can be influenced by economic and social development; Hence, the Committee recommended that "the Philippine Population Program should be designed on a broader scale and be fully integrated in the national development plans of the country. Economic, social and institutional policies and programs should be evolved with a conscious consideration of their impact on demographic behavior and objectives" (p. 122). Part of the failure to fully integrate population into the overall development plan is the difficulty of such integration at the operational level. This, in turn, is partly due to the complexity of the interaction between population and socioeconomic development,


Alejandro N. Herrin

and partly due to the inadequacy of the empirical knowledge base both internationally and nationally for the assessment of such interrelationships for development planning. An additional reason has been suggested, namely that "until recently, there has been an unclear institutional responsibility for...
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