Birth rate in Australia: should it concern the government?
...It is to note that Australian birth rate is about 1.7 births per women and compared with other well developed countries it is considered low. Low birth rate has influences on various areas of people’s life such as economy, population demographic and overall sustainability of the society. One of the major implications of birth rate decline is the development of a negative workplace dependency ratio. This is the ratio of those in the workforce to those not in the workforce. A decreasing birth rate means that the percentage of younger people or those of workforce age (20 – 64) declines, as the percentage of the population of non-workforce age (65+) continues to increase (Barnes, 2001: p.4). This would be a significant change in Australia in the future as “until now, the decline in youth and increase in the aged have been in balance…”(Barnes, 2001: p.5) and therefore current policies may not be designed to suit these kinds of shifts in population, for example, aged pensions, the healthcare system and concessions.
Another significant effect of a declining birth rate is a reduced workforce which can equal decreased productivity for a nation. “A decrease in the size of the workforce will reduce the capacity of the economy to maintain rates of output growth…”(Barnesn 2001: p.14) which in turn puts pressure on the existing workforce to increase productivity and performance...
Have the natural hazards increased in quantity?
...From a physical viewpoint, global climate change introduces new physical patterns such as increased erosion because of deforestation… Then, men have to cope with this modified environment. Global warning brings about more and more flooding along coasts and around islands since the sea level rises (Bangladesh, Pays Bas, Maldives). Then, human beings have the impression that catastrophes are increasing. From October 2000 to April 2001, a large part of British Isles was affected by the most widespread flooding in over 50 years. Moreover, storm frequency has started to increase in Europe between Christmas and 1999-2000 New Year.
However, John Whittow states, “this is not to say that natural hazard are proliferating” (p309). It means that there is not a quantitative increase of hazard occurrences. On the one hand, the number of natural hazards seems to be higher due to the rise of technology that enables men to detect disasters more frequently. Hazards were less registered in the past but it does not mean that they were less numerous...
Globalisation: its effects on the national citizenship
...National citizenship is generally regarded as the original and enduring form of citizenship. Despite new approaches and theories of citizenship, the nation-state type is still today the dominant form of citizenship. Arising from the building of nation-states in the nineteenth century with the accompanying emphasis on the rights of the citizens from the French Revolution, citizenship played a key role in maintaining public order and loyalty to the state. As Castles points out, “the essence of the nation-state is the institution of citizenship: the integration of all the inhabitants of a territory into a political community, and their political equality as citizens.” Equally as important is the idea of ‘the other’. National citizenship was concerned with the protection of the state and the citizen as the warrior-citizen. To this end, those who were not citizens were essentially foreigners or the enemy, those who could not be trusted or deemed loyal to the state. National citizenship therefore revolves around these two elements. The rights given to citizens by the state in return for their loyalty and preparedness to lay down their life for their country but also the exclusion of non-citizens. These factors are very important in the upcoming discussion as the forces of globalisation are seen by many to undermine both of these aspects...
Differences and Similarities of Poverty in Mexico and the UK
...This paper will attempt to discuss different types of “poverties” and different perceptions of it. Two different countries will be compared to form a better understanding of what poverty means in dissimilar worlds. The concept of absolute poverty is usually associated with material possessions, i.e having enough food, clothing and shelter. From this term those who are considered poor are those who do not have the basic provisions, these basics form a poverty line and those who fall below the line are usually considered as being poor. According to Drewnowski and Scott (cited in Haralambos 2000), they go beyond the levels of physical needs and look at other factors such as education, leisure and recreation. Yet the concept of absolute poverty can be criticised as it states that there are minimum basic needs for all societies, Townsend (1970) argues that it would be difficult to compare societies on needs such as food and shelter, without taking into factor things such as leisure activities and occupations. Townsend is a pioneer in the concept of relative poverty he talks about poverty being specific to a society and the time; he says that it transcends a lack of material resources. His work into poverty in the 1970s led poverty to be highlighted into the political forefront. He came up with two standards of poverty, the first of the states definition, in which they use official statistics, and the amount of income support that people get, those who fall below the levels of insufficient housing. He sees it as the government of the time determine who falls below the poverty line. He also states that of the relative income standard of poverty, this households for which fall below the average for households with the same number of occupants...
...Superficially savanna is regarded as a 'grassland'. However this general description fails to identify the diversity of the biome. A number of academics have categorised savanna into different sub zones. Werger (1983) defines four formation types.
- Grassland – tree coverage is less than 1% of the surface.
- Savanna – trees coverage spans from 1 – 10 %. In some areas scrub such as thickets 1 –10%.
- Dense savanna – trees or shrub coverage spans 10 – 50%.
- Savanna woodland – dominant tree layer. Canopy has a coverage that spans 50–90 %. Some shrubs will appear in undergrowth, there will be some areas of developed grass.
There are five factors that together determine what form of savanna is successful at any particular location. These are climate, edaphic, hydrological and geomorphologic factors, fire and grazing (Bourliere and Hadley 1992)...