recently featured two pieces on the Arab world’s burgeoning population. “Demographics of the Arab World
,” a radio broadcast, brings together Magda Abu-Fadil
of the American University in Beirut and Bernard Haykel
of Princeton University for a look at the region’s demographic trends. Despite possessing different political systems and being at different levels of economic development, demographic challenges of youth bulges, emigration, and gender gaps are common to countries across the Arab world. “Arab World Experiences Rapid Population Explosion
,” a written interview with demographer Patrick Gerland of the United Nations Population Division, tackles similar issues. Topics of discussion include demographic variations between Middle Eastern nations, fertility rates, the consequences of the region’s youth bulge, and best- and worst-case scenarios for the Arab world’s future.
State of the World’s Cities 2010/2011: Bridging the Urban Divide is the most recent edition of UN-HABITAT’s biennial outlook into global population centers. Analyzing the “the complex social, political, economic, and cultural dynamics of urban environments,” the report explores the “ways in which many urban dwellers are excluded from the advantages of city life.” UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon draws a connection between cities and climate change in the report’s preface, writing, “With over half the world’s population now living in cities, and cities making a disproportionate contribution to climate change, urbanization is one of the ‘crucial agendas’ of our time.”