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Nova Scotia Population - Trends and Implications. Lars Osberg Economics Department Dalhousie University June 5, 2007. Why are we worried?. So traditional working age population likely to decline . What’s the context ? Birth rates in Canada and the OECD.

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nova scotia population trends and implications

Nova Scotia Population- Trends and Implications

Lars Osberg

Economics Department

Dalhousie University

June 5, 2007

forecasting future populations much less reliable for small areas long time scales
Forecasting Future Populations ?Much less reliable for small areas, long time scales
  • Population = Births - Deaths + Net Inflow
  • Nationally, migration is policy variable
    • At local level, gross migration flows are much larger than net flows or changes in natural increase
  • Statistics Canada Life Paths model
    • Projects implications of continuation of recent trends – but labour market response is not modeled
      • Shortages => higher wages => changesin migration
v2461272 canada employment rate both sexes 55 v2463162 nova scotia employment rate both sexes 55
V2461272 Canada; Employment rate Both sexes; 55 + V2463162 Nova Scotia; Employment rate Both sexes; 55 +
slide13
V2342629 Canada; Median age; Total, all retirees; Both sexes V2342630 Canada; Average age; Total, all retirees; Both sexes
how long can people work how long do they want to work
How long can people work?How long do they want to work?
  • Males 65+
    • labour force participation rate

1921 - 58.4%

1931 - 55.7%

2004 - 11.8%

      • Many reasons to expect future increase
        • jobs are now much less physical
        • workers better educated, career oriented
        • Many need the money
          • 38.4% of retirees need GIS
  • “Working Longer”
    • Social Policy Objective in many countries
    • - only a “good thing” if voluntary
labour force participation rate source population
Labour force = Participation Rate * Source Population
  • “Labour Shortage”
    • = Demand > Supply
      • Wages increase, firms start training, etc.
    • = “Too many jobs”
      • In exactly what sense is this a problem for Atlantic Canada?
  • Forecasts of “shortage” depend on:
    • Demand projections
    • Population & Participation assumptions
    • + Interaction of Supply & Demand
        • in a market economy, firms will raise wages & invest to increase labour productivity
  • Productivity trend dominates GDP growth
is rural viability really the key problem for nova scotia
Is rural viability really the key problem for Nova Scotia?
  • Population decline severe in rural areas
  • Availability of services depends on population base
    • Key issue is Minimum Efficient Scale for schools, hospitals & health services
    • Technical change in telecommunications very rapid – changes space/service relation
  • How is a ‘problem’ defined ?
    • determines which solutions are imagined
useful web links
Useful Web Links
  • OECD - Ageing and Employment Policies
    • http://www.oecd.org/department/0,2688,en_2649_34747_1_1_1_1_1,00.html
  • Policy Research Initiative
    • Population Aging and Life-Course Flexibility
      • http://policyresearch.gc.ca/
        • http://policyresearch.gc.ca/page.asp?pagenm=rp_lc_index
  • http://myweb.dal.ca/osberg/
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