Some Demographic Trends in Atlantic Canada: Potential Consquences and Policy Response

  • Syed Ather Hussain Akbari
Part of the SpringerBriefs in Population Studies book series (BRIEFSPOPULAT)


The population growth rate in Atlantic Canada has been in continuous decline for most of the post-World War II period, the most drastic taking place after the 1970s. Net out-migration from the region has been a permanent factor in this decline. This means that to maintain some population growth, the region has relied solely on natural increase (births minus deaths). However, this component of population growth has also declined continuously, falling below even the out-migration rate in the new millennium, thereby causing the population growth rate to become negative in the first half of the last decade. During 2006–2010, the population growth rate rose but remained very close to zero (i.e., an increase of only about 14,350 in the region) because of a lower net out-migration rate than occurred at the beginning of the century and one observed largely due to an increase in international immigration during this period. Chart 1 shows the trends in components of population growth.
Chart 1

Components of population growth rates in Atlantic Canada in the post-World War II period. Source and notes Table A2. A negative growth rate means population declined during that period


Population Growth Rate Nova Scotia Population Decline Objective Structure Clinical Examination Atlantic Province 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


  1. Akbari, A.H. (2009). Socioeconomic and Demographic Profiles of Immigrants in Atlantic Canada. Report prepared for Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency (
  2. Atlantic Institute for Market Studies (2009). In the Media Atlantic Canada’s aging population and expected labour shortages. Retrieved October 29, 2011, from
  3. Atlantic Provinces Economic Council (2007a). Atlantic Report (Winter).Google Scholar
  4. Atlantic Provinces Economic Council (2007b, April). Where Have all Workers Gone? Google Scholar
  5. Canadian Tourism Research Institute and Conference Board of Canada (2010). The future of Canada’s tourism sector: Economic recession only a temporary reprieve from labour shortages. Canadian Tourism Human Resource Council. Retrieved October 29, 2011, from
  6. McNiven, J.D., & M. Foster. (2009, January). The developing workforce problem: Confronting Canadian labour shortages in the coming decades. Halifax: Atlantic Institute for Market Studies.Google Scholar
  7. Newfoundland and Labrador (2007a). All the skills to succeed: Report of the Newfoundland and Labrador skills task force report. Retrieved October 29, 2011, from
  8. Ray Barton Associates Ltd. (2008). Trends and patterns in skills and labour shortages. Final report submitted to Council of Deputy Minister’s Secretariat. Retrieved October 29, 2011, from, Ottawa.
  9. Statistics Canada. (2011). Estimates of total population, Canada, Provinces and Territories (Special tabulations, Demography Division).Google Scholar
  10. Tomlin, B. (2007). The seat shortage: Changing demographics and representation in the house of commons. C.D. Howe Institute (e-brief, May 29, 2007).Google Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of EconomicsSt. Mary’s UniversityHalifaxCanada

Personalised recommendations