The concept of birth rate is used to refer to the proportional number of births that take place in a population and a time frame determined. From the perspective of demography, the birth rate constitutes a measure that allows to quantify fertility levels.

NatalityThe birth rate is usually calculated taking as a reference a period of one year based on the number of births in a community for every thousand residents. This data is easy to obtain and interpret, but it is not very accurate to measure fertility since it depends on the age and sex structure of the analyzed community. In a town where most of the people are over 40, for example, there will be a lower birth rate than a town of younger people.

Other alternatives used to calculate fertility are the general fertility rate (option that focuses on the relationship between the number of births in a given period of time and the number of female inhabitants of childbearing age) and the so-called overall fertility rate.

In this 2012 the publication The World Factbook of the CIA (Central Intelligence Agency of the United States) has made it clear that the countries with the highest birth rate are most of the African continent. Thus, among them are Niger, Uganda, Mali, Zambia, Burkina Fasso, Ethiopia and Somalia, which are the undisputed leaders of the ranking.

Against them, it should be noted that among the nations that have a lower birth rate are Monaco, Hong Kong, Germany, Japan or Austria, with the Australian island of Norfolk the one with the lowest rate. Specifically, this becomes negative. And it is that for every thousand inhabitants it has -9 births.

In addition to the aforementioned document, which is important in this matter, we must emphasize that there is another one that is based on the estimates that the UN (United Nations Organization) has made for the period between 2010 and 2015. Those establish that Niger It will remain in the lead as the country with the highest birth rate while Bosnia and Herzegovina will be placed as the nation with the lowest rate.

Specifically, the aforementioned African country is calculated that for every thousand inhabitants it will achieve 47.7 births while the aforementioned European nation will only reach 8.2 births.

The birth rate, for example, provides data that allow the design of social and economic policies. Populations that age at very rapid rates and have few births are likely to become stagnant and not economically productive. Therefore, the authorities will try to facilitate the establishment of young couples who are in a position to bring new inhabitants to the town.

Some countries, What China, they exercise a strict birth control as they are overpopulated and resources may become insufficient to meet the needs of all people.

In addition to all the above, we have to underline the existence of another term that uses the word that we are analyzing. This is the expression “birth explosion” that attempts to define the demographic phenomenon that occurred in the period between 1946 and 1964, after the Second World War, when there was an impressive growth in the birth rate.