Demo-Economic Policy Simulations for Belgium

  • R. Lesthaeghe
  • S. Wijewickrema
  • M. Despontin
  • A. De Kerpel
Part of the NATO Conference Series book series (NATOCS, volume 3)


All countries that have gone through what is known in the relevant literature as the “demographic transition” have experienced the fertility decline which belongs to the very essence of this transition. Such a decline in fertility which needs about 100 to 150 years from beginning to end is part of the history of all the industrialized countries of the world. This major fertility decline was accompanied by short term rises and falls in fertility. Thus a fertility decline is no new phenomenon. However, the fertility decline experienced in Western Europe, North America and Australia since the 1960’s seems to get into a class apart because of the following reasons:
  1. 1.

    The rapidity and degree of fall has hardly ever before been witnessed outside times of war or major economic depression (see Table 1).

  2. 2.

    The discussion and debate concerning the decline under consideration have been markedly characterized by a great deal of prudence. Social scientists for their part have been less categoric and more nuanced in what they have said and consequently less pessimistic than ever before.



Fertility Decline Policy Variable Multiple Criterion Decision Total Labor Force Adult Consumer 


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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1978

Authors and Affiliations

  • R. Lesthaeghe
    • 1
  • S. Wijewickrema
    • 1
  • M. Despontin
    • 1
  • A. De Kerpel
    • 1
  1. 1.Vrije Universiteit BrusselBelgium

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