News & Highlights Archive

Read about news and highlights from the World Population Program and its research between 2009 and 2013.

News 2013

19 December 2013
Investing in cleaner air in India increases people’s wellbeing

While the costs of protecting the environment are often seen as impediments to economic development, a new analysis of different measures to control air pollution in India reveals that the costs of even stringent controls are outweighed by their economic and social benefits.  More

12 December 2013
Reconceptualizing the study of population aging

Age is not just the number of years one has lived, argue IIASA population researchers. A new study from the group provides a set of tools for measuring age in all its dimensions.  More

04 December 2013
Education—not fertility—key for economic development

A new study published in the journal Demography shows that improvements in education levels around the world have been key drivers of economic growth in developing countries that has previously been attributed to declines in fertility rates.  More

02 December 2013
Tip Sheet for Journalists: Latest findings from IIASA population researchers

New findings from IIASA demography experts: The economic crisis led to increased smoking in the USA; and societies’ stereotypes of older people.  More

07 November 2013
Crime associated with higher mortality rates

People with criminal records die younger than those without, shows a comprehensive national study for Norway conducted by researchers at IIASA and Statistics Norway.  More

30 October 2013
WIC/IUSSP Call for Papers - Deadline 6 Nov 2013

Demographic Differential Vulnerability to Natural Disasters in the Context of Climate Change Adaptation,International Seminar inKao Lak (Phang Nga), Thailand, 23-25 April 2014  More

23 September 2013
Before the storm

September, 2013: When disaster hits, the way people respond is a matter of life and death—and that response depends strongly on how prepared people are. New IIASA research highlights the role of education in surviving hurricanes.  More

02 September 2013
Media Appointments: Austria’s population challenges

IIASA population program leader and Wittgenstein Center director Wolfgang Lutz speaks to reporters and the general public at several events this month. Lutz is also available for one-on-one interviews. For details please contact the IIASA press office.  More

21 August 2013
How personality affects fertility

A new study from IIASA population researchers finds a link between men’s and women’s personalities and the likelihood that they will have children.  More

01 July 2013
Population changes provide opportunities for development

Current population changes in much of the developed world present an opportunity, not a threat, according to a new report produced by IIASA, which underlies discussions this week at the International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD) Beyond 2014 conference.  More

25 April 2013
Vienna in 2050

In 2050, the Viennese will likely live longer and work longer, according to new findings from the Austrian Future.Monitor project, a population-based effort to project the future development of Austria and Vienna.  More

08 April 2013
POPNET Newsletter 44, Winter 2012/13

The latest issue of IIASA's POPNET newsletter provides a brief overview of last years highlights at the World Population Program  More

04 April 2013
UN Human Development Report relies on IIASA projections

IIASA population and education projections underlie the United Nations Human Development Report 2013, which shows development gains in the Southern Hemisphere during the last several years.  More

26 March 2013
IIASA advises on post-2015 development goals

From 25-27 March, IIASA researchers joined other academic experts in Bali to advise a high-level panel of international policymakers on the post-2015 development agenda.  More

18 March 2013
Wolfgang Lutz elected to Leopoldina

IIASA World Population Program Leader Wolfgang Lutz has been elected to the Leopoldina- German National Academy of Sciences.  More

26 February 2013
Singapore: Population under pressure

February, 2013: A trip to Singapore by IIASA Population Program Leader Wolfgang Lutz has stirred up debate and discussion in the tiny island country, which faces rising immigration and falling fertility rates.  More

21 February 2013
WIC 5-year Report

The Wittgenstein Centre for Demography and Global Human Capital publishes a summary of its achievements  More

13 February 2013
IIASA population researchers in Singapore

This February, IIASA World Population Program Leader Wolfgang Lutz takes his research to Singapore—sharing new insights on population issues in Singapore, Asia, and the world.  More

06 February 2013
Education: Preparation for the unexpected

February, 2013: Education is the single most important socioeconomic factor affecting people’s vulnerability to natural disasters, both regionally and globally, according to new IIASA research.  More

News 2012

05 December 2012
Professorship at Jacobs University for V. Skirbekk

Vegard Skirbekk has been appointed Adjunct Professor at Jacobs University Bremen  More

30 November 2012
IIASA demographer presents new findings in Australia

IIASA’s Wolfgang Lutz gave a public lecture yesterday in Australia, co-sponsored by IIASA’s newest National Member Organization, CSIRO.  More

20 November 2012
Redefining age: IIASA population researcher wins ERC Advanced Grant

IIASA demographer Sergei Scherbov has won an Advanced Grant from the European Research Council to explore population aging and its impacts on Europe and beyond.  More

29 October 2012
New POP research at the IIASA 40th Anniversary Conference

POP researchers have presented new findings at the IIASA 40th Anniversary Conference: Worlds Within Reach – From Science to Policy, which was hosted from 24 to 26 October in Vienna and Laxenburg.  More

18 October 2012
Elke Loichinger receives AWARD OF EXCELLENCE 2012 of the BMW_F

For her dissertation: Europe’s future human capital: population projections by age, sex, education, labor force participation and health status, Elke Loichinger was honored by the Austrian government  More

17 October 2012
Aging in Africa

People over the age of 60 will be fastest-growing population segment in sub-Saharan Africa in the next decades. What challenges and opportunities does this change present for the region?  More

03 October 2012
POP at the Lower Austria Marketplace of Science

On 3 October, IIASA scientists and staff brought their science to the public at the Lower Austria "Marktplatz der Wissenschaft" or "Marketplace of Science."  More

12 September 2012
Experiencing Science on the „MS Wissenschaft“

IIASA’s World Population Program and the Wittgenstein Centre for Demography and Global Human Capital are participating in the interactive science exhibition on sustainability offered to students aged 10 to 14 years.  More

26 August 2012
New POP research at Asian Population Association Conference 2012

IIASA population researchers are presenting new findings at the Asian Population Association Conference, which runs from 26 to 29 August in Bangkok, Thailand.  More

22 August 2012
Wolfgang Lutz presents at the Alpbach Technology Forum

Between 22 and 26 August, 2012, IIASA Director and CEO Pavel Kabat and IIASA World Population Program leader Wolfgang Lutz are discussing their research on population, innovation, energy, and sustainability at the Alpbach Technology Forum, an internationally-focused meeting related to science, technology, and society.  More

22 August 2012
Science for a sustainable future: IIASA at Alpbach Forum

How will science and technology shape our global future?  More

06 August 2012
New European and Asian Data Sheets 2012

By applying the multi-state model of population dynamics, including differential fertility, mortality and migration rates, IIASA has produced projections of the European and Asian population by age, sex and four levels of educational attainment. The results are now presented with the European Demographic Data Sheet 2012 and the Asian Demographic and Human Capital Data Sheet 2012.  More

03 July 2012
Wolfgang Lutz addresses “birth rate” tensions in keynote

Wolfgang Lutz, leader of IIASA’s World Population Program and Director of the Wittgenstein Centre,gave a lecture on “Starting a family in times of decreased fertility"  More

16 June 2012
Marcin Stonawski and colleagues win EAPS Poster Award

The European Association for Population Studies (EAPS) awarded the “Poster Award for the Best Poster Presented at EPC2012” to IIASA’s Marcin Stonawski, Vegard Skirbekk, Michaela Potancokova (and colleagues from Pew Research Center) for their article Religious demography of emerging economies.  More

12 June 2012
IIASA education research at the European Population Conference

IIASA’s groundbreaking work on the role of education in population development is being featured at the European Population Conference 2012, in Stockholm, Sweden, starting June 13.  More

09 May 2012
Wolfgang Lutz elected to Austrian Academy of Sciences

Leader of IIASA’s World Population Program Wolfgang Lutz has been elected as a full member to the Austrian Academy of Sciences.  More

02 March 2012
Demography’s role in Sustainable Development

In a letter to the editor of Science (24 Feb), several IIASA researchers and another 17 development experts outline how humans (population size, distribution, and characteristics) are central to sustainability.  More

News 2011

25 December 2011
Brain function - a new indicator of the burden of aging

Cognitive function might be a better indicator of aging on an economy, than age-distribution  More

27 October 2011
7 billion people are not the issue - human development is what counts

Amid concerns about the capacity of the planet to support more people, a panel of population and development experts argue that it is not the number of people that is of concern, but more so their age, education, health status, and location that is most relevant to sustainability.  More

09 September 2011
Wittgenstein Centre for Demography and Global Human Capital Symposium

The Wittgenstein Centre for Demography and Global Human Capital Symposium officially opened on 29 September at the Austrian Parliament, Vienna  More

01 September 2011
Publication Award

The following paper Demography, Education and Democracy: Global Trends and the Case of Iran by Jesus Crespo Cuaresma, Wolfgang Lutz and Mohammad Abbasi-Shavazi won the WU Best Paper Award 2011 of Category 3: foreign business communication, law, humanities, sociology, commercial geography, interdisciplinary works.  More

28 July 2011
Education - a key determinant of population growth and human well-being

Future trends in global population growth could be significantly affected by improvements in both the quality and quantity of education, particularly female education.  More

28 June 2011
Fertility rates affected by global economic crisis

The global economic recession of 2008–2009 has been followed by a decline in fertility rates in Europe and the United States, bringing to an end the first concerted rise in fertility rates across the developed world since the 1960s.  More

12 April 2011
Wolfgang Lutz presents to Austrian Parliament

Wolfgang Lutz spoke at a public session of the Austrian Parliament on the multiple benefits to health, economic prosperity, and democracy of investing in education.  More

23 February 2011
Wolfgang Lutz lectured on education and sustainable development

IIASA demographer Wolfgang Lutz highlighted the importance of female education in lowering fertility rates and child mortality in developing countries in a lecture 2 March at the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), Washington, DC.  More

31 January 2011
New Centre on population and education research opens in Vienna

IIASA, the Austrian Academy of Sciences and the Vienna University of Economics and Business have established the Wittgenstein Centre for Demography and Global Human Capital.  More

News before 2011

Demographic Data Sheets

The European Demographic Data Sheet 2010 and Asian Demographic & Human Capital Data Sheet 2008 are available online (download as PDF). Click here for more information about the Asian Demographic and Human Capital Data Sheet 2008.

New article in Science

Due to increasing life-spans and improving health many populations are ‘aging’ more slowly than conventional measures indicate. As published in Science (10 Sep), IIASA scientists have developed new measures of aging that take disability and longevity into account. More

Wittgenstein Award 

Wolfgang Lutz is the recipient of the Wittgenstein Award for 2010. Also known as the
“Austro Nobel” it is the highest science prize in Austria and it is the first time it has been awarded to a social scientist. The award recognizes exceptional research by scientists who occupy a prominent place in the international scientific community. More

In Memoriam: Nathan Keyfitz 1913 – 2010

Nathan Keyfitz, leader of IIASA's Population Program from 1983 to 1991 and IIASA Deputy Director during 1992, passed away on April 6, 2010, at the age of 96. Keyfitz was one of the giants of demography. He is credited for developing the field of mathematical demography and at IIASA he also pioneered the application of demographic methods to several other fields.

Nathan came to IIASA in 1983 from Harvard University, where he was the Andelot Professor of Sociology Emeritus. Previously, he had been a professor at the University of Toronto (1959-1963), the University of Chicago (1963-1968), and the University of California, Berkeley (1968-1972).

It was at Chicago that Nathan began to apply mathematical tools and computer technology to the analysis of demographic data. In 1968 he published his groundbreaking Introduction to the Mathematics of Population that described his methodology.

At IIASA he increasingly applied these demographic methods to areas outside of demography as he flourished in IIASA’s interdisciplinary atmosphere in areas such as sustainable development and foreign aid. Much of the work IIASA’s Population Program is doing today – from applications of the multi-state model to probabilistic population projections to population-environment analysis – has its roots in Nathan’s creative ideas.

After leading IIASA's Population Program, Nathan became an Institute Scholar from 1992 to 1993, and served as IIASA's Deputy Director from April to October 1992, when he led the organization of the major 1992 IIASA conference on the challenges for systems analysis in the nineties and beyond. Nathan also established an association for IIASA alumni, known as the IIASA Society, which today has nearly 900 members.

Nathan, who was married to Beatrice (Orkin) Keyfitz from 1939 until her death in October 2009, had two children, Barbara and Robert.

We were privileged to have him at IIASA and we will always treasure his memory. He was exceedingly dedicated to IIASA and an incredibly kind and humble person given his seminal contributions to research.

A memorial service honoring the life of Nathan Keyfitz will be held at 1 p.m. on April 13 at the Bigelow Chapel in Mount Auburn Cemetery (580 Mt. Auburn St., Cambridge, MA 02138, USA). More

An online guestbook for personal condolences can be found at

Wolfgang Lutz, Nebojsa Nakicenovic and Detlof von Winterfeldt

2009 Mattei Dogan Award to Wolfgang Lutz

At the IUSSP's International Population Conference, attended by 2,300 demographers, IIASA's Wolfgang Lutz gave a plenary talk on the role demographers play in understanding population and climate change. The keynote speech marked the presentation of the 2009 Mattei Dogan Award to Lutz who will use the prize to fund the training of a young African demographer at IIASA.

Researcher Grant to Vegard Skirbekk

Vegard Skirbekk has been awarded the European Research Council's European Starting Independent Researcher Grant. The five-year study on the demography of skills and beliefs in Europe will look at how factors such as productivity, attitudes, and beliefs will change in Europe in the next 50 years. More

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Last edited: 18 July 2019


Katja Scherbov

Program and Project Officer

Population and Just Societies Program

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