The question of whether our planet is getting too full to support its human population is a topic of hot discussion in all sectors of society and across the world. A recent UN report says that there will be 9 billion people on the planet by 2050 and 10 billion by 2100 – that’s nearly a 50% increase on the current global population. The UN report, along with other similar studies, prompts critical questions about whether our future is sustainable.
Impacts of population growth on depletion of natural resources, increase in urban development and demands on health and economic systems are inevitable. But do we really need to be worried? Are our next generations doomed to lead overcrowded lives, with resources growing ever scarcer? Or can society adapt to allow healthy lives for all?
Whether these UN estimates come true or not, the world’s population will continue to grow in the coming decades. What can we do now to prepare for this future?
This interdisciplinary seminar series will bring fresh perspectives on the question of whether the planet is full by looking at a wide number of cross-cutting issues that will be affected by anticipated population growth. Presentations will raise important questions about population trajectories and their relevance for developing appropriate policies to respond to challenges they raise. They will also look at the opportunities of population growth, as the possibilities to harness the wealth of human talent are increased and our ability to manage global challenges is improved.
Seminars take place on Thursdays during term time, 3.30-5.00pm, at the Oxford Martin School.
Events in this series: