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Demographic Speculation on Karachi by Haris Gazdar

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Karachi Conference 2014 - Demographic Speculation on Karachi by Haris Gazdar

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Demographic Speculation on Karachi by Haris Gazdar

  1. 1. DEMOGRAPHIC SPECULATION ON KARACHI Haris Gazdar researchcollective.org © Collective for Social Science Research
  2. 2. Outline •Population trends since 1980s and projections •Ethnic distribution and projections •Implications © Collective for Social Science Research
  3. 3. Long trends in population size Source: Population Census, various © Collective for Social Science Research
  4. 4. Historic trends projected Source: Author’s calculations, Population Census, various © Collective for Social Science Research
  5. 5. Projections – assuming undercounting in 1998 census © Collective for Social Science Research
  6. 6. Now assuming undercounting, and extraordinary blip due to war © Collective for Social Science Research
  7. 7. How realistic are the exceptions? •Historic trend shows declining growth rate since 1951 –Unexceptional till 1981, good predictive power, standard method –Lower urban fertility rates: 3 vs 4.5 –Absolute numbers of migrants rising, but as a proportion of population declining: 46% in 1981, 24% in 1998 •First exception –Undercounted 1.375 million, or 10 per cent of population –Afghans, ethnic Bengalis/Burmese? •Second exception –Implies not one-off displacement, but continuous, because assuming higher growth rates over 2 decades –Over 5.5 million EXTRA migrants between 2003 and 2009 © Collective for Social Science Research
  8. 8. Ethnic distribution – unexceptional historic trends Population: 14 million in 2011, 20 million in 2025 © Collective for Social Science Research
  9. 9. Ethnic distribution – 1 exception Population: 17 million in 2011, 25 million in 2025 © Collective for Social Science Research
  10. 10. Ethnic distribution – 2 exceptions Population: 19 million in 2011, 32 million in 2025 © Collective for Social Science Research
  11. 11. Implications •Need firmer basis for exceptions from historic trends than has been provided thus far –All periods are exceptional, and trends take this in, when baseline numbers are big •Resource allocation politics is mixed up –If Karachi is bigger than we thought, then Urdu-speaking proportion is smaller that we thought, and vice versa –If Pashto-speaking population is bigger than we thought, then it is correspondingly smaller in KP/FATA •A highly plural multi-ethnic future is inevitable –The city’s heritage is that of a cosmopolitan centre, and return to that –Older districts like South already plural – rest of the city is catching up –Inevitability of politics of inclusion/negotiation, if want to avoid conflict –Urban governance needs to proactively support/celebrate ethnic plurality, rather than ignore it © Collective for Social Science Research

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