Studies in Comparative International Development

, Volume 50, Issue 4, pp 433–454 | Cite as

Special Issue: Population and Development: Comparative Anthropological Perspectives

  • Daniel Jordan SmithEmail author
  • Jennifer A. Johnson-Hanks


In this introduction, we do five things. First, we briefly review some of the contributions that anthropology has made in recent decades to the study of development. Second, we discuss the overall importance of population processes in development. Third, we provide an introduction to the field of anthropological demography. While each of these sections is necessarily brief, they are meant to situate the articles in this issue, placing them in a broad framework that suggests the contributions that anthropology can make to the study of comparative international development in general, and to the relationship between population and development in particular. To this end, the fourth aim of this introduction is to consider how anthropology approaches the social science task of comparison. Familiarizing readers with this engagement will, we hope, help in thinking about the contributions of the papers in this issue. The final section provides a brief introduction to each article, suggesting some of the ways they intersect with and illuminate themes we have raised here.


Anthropology Population Development Anthropological demography 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Daniel Jordan Smith
    • 1
    Email author
  • Jennifer A. Johnson-Hanks
    • 2
  1. 1.Brown UniversityProvidenceUSA
  2. 2.University of CaliforniaBerkeleyUSA

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