Through its research, the MDM Group aims to advance demographic modeling methods to assess and forecast population dynamics with a focus on demographic and spatial heterogeneity under different socioeconomic scenarios at the global, national, and sub-national level.

The MDM Group’s research focus is at the core of the IIASA strategic plan in rigorously incorporating the human-centered system model into systems analysis by considering the feedback mechanisms between human and other social, economic, and natural systems. The group has a strong focus on population forecasting using a scenario-based approach allowing for aligning future demographic components with socioeconomic scenarios such as the Shared Socioeconomic Pathways (SSPs) originally developed for the climate change research community. Apart from updating global projections of population, human capital, and other relevant dimensions using scenarios, the group also carries out innovative, policy-relevant research at the local and regional level, for instance, assessing social vulnerability to COVID-19 at a small spatial scale.

Models, tools, datasets

Mumbai, India, Passengers

Sub-national Population and Human Capital Projections

World population

Wittgenstein Centre Human Capital Data Explorer (WCDE)


Hand die durch die Wand bricht

Future Migration Scenarios for Europe (FUME)

Human Tracks

Quantifying Migration Scenarios for Better Policy (QuantMig)

People figurines on a map of Western Europe

Policy REcommendations to Maximise the beneficial Impact of Unexplored Mobilities in and beyond the European Union (PREMIUM_EU)


Nicholas Gailey profile picture

Nicholas Gailey

Researcher (MDM)

Anne Goujon profile picture

Anne Goujon

Program Director and Principal Research Scholar (POPJUS); Acting Research Group Leader and Principal Research Scholar (MDM)

Samir K.C. profile picture

Samir K.C.

Senior Research Scholar (MDM)

Michaela Potancokova profile picture

Michaela Potancokova

Research Scholar (MDM)



04 October 2023

Migration Estimates, Scenarios and Policies: Three new QuantMig online tools

The project Quantifying Migration Scenarios for Better Policy (QuantMig) has launched three freely-accessible, open online tools.
Migration in Europe

21 August 2023

Scenarios for proactive measures and inclusive policies on migration in Europe

Migration is a complex and unpredictable phenomenon, often triggered by political crises, economic downturns, and natural or human-made disasters. A new policy brief and a White Paper authored by IIASA researchers and UK colleagues provide valuable insights and recommendations to support policymaking and increase understanding around the realistic implications of high-migration events.

05 July 2023

White Paper on Migration Uncertainty: Towards Foresight and Preparedness

IIASA researcher Michaela Potancokova together with project team members, present evidence and recommendations from the QuantMig project in Population Europe's Discussion Paper.



28 November 2022

Standardizing migration data in Europe

Options Magazine, Winter 2022: Researchers illustrated the discrepancies in migration flow statistics across Europe to help standardize data and better understand migration patterns.
Regional impacts

11 July 2022

Fertile feedback

IIASA research shows that increasing access to clean energy can rein in population growth, and so reduce future energy needs. Another study finds that falling fertility does not have to be bad news for economies.
Population. Different multiethnic people of different ages. Groups of families.

24 June 2020

The gender dimension of sustainable development

Options Summer 2020: Our world is in the midst of an economic transformation as labor upheavals and climate change wreak havoc on present sustainability models. Could a focus on women’s empowerment help find a way out?
female head illustration