Lessons > Social Impacts > For Your Consideration
The term “demographic transition” was originally based on the model of Western European countries, although it is now applied to every country in the world. Issues of culture, religion, government, economy, and natural resources, among others, affect this transition. You might find that where a country stands in the demographic transition may give you some idea of the problems it is currently facing and those that it has overcome in the past. The distinction of “first,” “second,” and “third world” countries is purely fictional and subjective, but disease, famine, and war are more endemic to those countries categorized as “third world” than the more highly developed countries in the “first world.” “First world” countries are plagued by urbanization, pollution, higher energy needs due to higher standards of living, drug and alcohol abuse and social disorders. Although the “first world” countries are now, for the most part, either approaching a zero population growth or heading toward a negative population growth, the overall effect has been an exponential population boom that occurred after the Industrial Revolution.