Assignment 2 - Research Paper Example

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Name 2-01-2013 Title: Demographic Shift Course Section/# One of the most important sociological issues facing the world population right now is how to prepare for and deal with a rapidly aging population. Whereas human populations have experienced record levels of growth within the past several decades, the size of the global human population is actually expected to begin to decrease around the year 2030…
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2-01 Demographic Shift Section/# One of the most important sociological issues facing the world populationright now is how to prepare for and deal with a rapidly aging population. Whereas human populations have experienced record levels of growth within the past several decades, the size of the global human population is actually expected to begin to decrease around the year 2030. This is due to a number of factors; however, the main factor is that fewer children are being born and individuals are living far longer and healthier lives than they once did. As a function of analyzing how this issue fits into the field of sociology, the knowns and unknowns about the given situation, and discussion of credible research on the topic, the proceeding analysis will attempt to engage with reader with these points. With regards to the importance of the topic and its relevance to the field of sociology, one need look no further than the level to which demographic shift effects societies and their ability to provide a high level of services to those older individuals within their midst. Furthermore, when one looks at the current situation with the Social Security Trust Fund, the true nature of the means by which demographic shifts affect both developed and developing societies, their economies, and their overall ability to maintain basic services to these affected groups are called into question (Kocaka 2011). Additionally, a profound effect of demographic shift and the aging of the population, is the fact that a decreasing level of tax revenues and efficiency is generated within a given economic system. Although the purpose of this brief paper is not to discuss the governmental effects of demographic shift as such, the fact of the matter is that the sociological impacts of an aging population are best understood within the given construct. As tax revenues and efficiency of given economic systems decrease, so too do the funding sources that would otherwise help to pay for a litany of medical related social programs, prescription plans, Medicare, Social Security, and the list goes on and on. Due to such an eventuality, demographic shift in an unprepared economic system can serve to severely threaten the survival of the society and/or the governmental system that oversees it. Many of the nations of Western Europe have already begun to experience the debilitating affect that such a demographic shift holds. Due to declining birth rates in countries such as France, Germany, Holland etc, population levels are no longer on sustainment levels; rather, they are in decline. As a function of this decline, it has become necessary for many of the Western European nations to rely heavily on immigration from North Africa and elsewhere throughout their former empires to provide the able bodied young workers that continue to provide the jobs and skilled trade that continue moving the economies forward (Okigbo 2006). However, such a plan is not able to be implemented indefinitely without either causing the societal shift of traditional European cultures towards something otherwise unrecognizable or ultimately engaging in a never ending game of population replacement. With regards to the known and unknown of the given situation that is being experienced around the world. The known is the fact that world populations are now or will soon decline, leaving key vacancies in workforce and consumer markets (Cohen 2006). This shrinkage brings us to the unknown; what effect this demographic shift will have on world society and the means whereby the remaining individuals seek to distribute the limited resources that remain between those that require a high level of care due to their old age and the need to continue to develop and retune the respective economies towards new directions of growth. Performing sociological research into this area is highly useful due to the fact that it ultimately transcends national boundaries as almost each and every society is expected to reach a population bubble within the near future. As a means of performing such sociological research, it is possible for the researcher to seek to ask some pointed questions with relation to how society will seek to work within the constraints of such a paradigm shift. This is helpful for many reasons; not the least of which is a level and degree of preparation and prior discussion of many of the determinants that will no doubt great society of the next few decades. As a function of thinking about such concerns prior to the time in which they are quite literally upon humanity with no time left to discuss or seek to find ways to lessen the effects and burdens, such a level of research can hope to inform key shareholders within the current generation as a means of preparing them for what will likely soon be. References Cohen, E. (2006, June). Why Have Children?. Commentary. pp. 44-49. Kocaka, O. (2011). A FIELD STUDY OF CHALLENGES FACED BY AGING WORKFORCE. Journal Of Yasar University, 6(24), 3913-3931. Okigbo, C., & Nelson, S. (2003). Precision Public Relations: Facing the Demographic Challenge. Public Relations Quarterly, 48(2), 29-35. Read More
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