The Demographic Transition Model, or DTM, is a model that was created to show changes in population demographics. The DTM is based on population trends across birth rates and death rates. This model is used to show that a country’s growth rate goes through states as the country becomes more economically developed.
Through the stages of the model, the relationship between the birth rate and death rate are shown. When changes are shown in relation to each of the characteristics, the total population is affected. This may be more easy to understand when looking at the five different stages of the DTM.
Stage 1 is when birth rates and death rates are high. Total population is consistent but it can be affected by events including wars or pandemics. Prior to the Industrial Revolution, most of the world was in this stage.
In Stage 2, modern medicine has led to a lower death rate, while birth rates are high. This means that the total population grows rapidly. The least developed countries in the world are typically in this stage.
In the next stage, birth rates decrease. This could be for a number of reasons, including access to contraception or an increase in the status of women. Population is still on the rise in this stage but at a much lower rate than in Stage 2. Almost all developing countries are in this stage.
In Stage 4, birth and death rates are low, and the population is stabilized. Many of the world’s developed countries are in this stage due to a few factors, including high levels of education, good healthcare, and a higher proportion of women in the workforce.
In Stage 5, fertility rates would be below the replacement level of two children. The elderly population would make up most of the population in this scenario. There are no countries that are in stage 5.
While there are some drawbacks to the DTM, such as the impact of migration or more insight into how long countries can expect to be in each stage, this model does provide easy-to-see information about population patterns and the relationship between birth rates and death rates.