World Population

The World Population Program (POP) studies the dynamics of changing population structures and their interactions with the natural, social, and economic environment. In 2015 it had a special focus on age structures with a view to re-defining age and aging in times of improving health and life expectancy and on the effects of changing levels of education for different ages and sexes.

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POP has been expanding demographic methods to make them more relevant for the analysis of contemporary global policy challenges. In particular, the program has operationalized the methods of multi-dimensional population dynamics by level of highest educational attainment for all countries in the world and produced, through this, the “human core” of the Shared Socioeconomic Pathways (SSPs)—the new future scenarios broadly agreed by the global environmental change research community.

POP has substantially advanced its work on redefining age and aging. It is also carrying out innovative analysis of demographic aspects of cognitive aging, labor-force participation, health, and vulnerability to environmental change.

In 2015, POP further intensified its scientific collaboration with other IIASA programs, conducting cross-cutting projects in particular with respect to modelling the heterogeneity of human agents in different IIASA models.

POP regularly disseminates scientific results to policy- and decision-makers. In 2015 it published the Global Human Capital Data Sheet.

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Last edited: 25 February 2016


Wolfgang Lutz

Interim Deputy Director General for Science Directorate - DDG for Science Department

Principal Research Scholar and Senior Program Advisor Population and Just Societies Program

Principal Research Scholar and Senior Program Advisor Social Cohesion, Health, and Wellbeing Research Group - Population and Just Societies Program

International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA)
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