With much attention in the international family planning community directed to the impending anniversary of the 1994 International Conference on Population and Development and the closing date of the Millennium Development Goals, the fact that 2012 is the 60th anniversary of two other milestones in population programming may have escaped notice. In 1952, the International Planned Parenthood Federation was created, and India became the first country to formulate a national policy to reduce population growth.
These and many other landmarks are highlighted in World Population Policies: Their Origin, Evolution and Impact, a new book by demographer John May that reviews several decades of policies, advocacy, and program interventions addressing the full range of diverse demographic trends seen globally.
May, who spent more than two decades working on population issues at the World Bank and other international institutions before recently assuming a fellowship at the Center for Global Development, is well-positioned to provide such an ambitious overview. Although the breadth of material included in the book means that some topics receive less coverage than a specialist might wish, it serves as a sound introduction to this diverse field, and offers some particularly interesting case studies. READ MORE.