Журнал "Демографія та соціальна економіка"

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№2 (20) 2013

Demography and social economy, 2013, 2(20):147-155
doi: https://doi.org/10.15407/dse2013.02.147

O.M. Gladun
PhD (Economics), Senior Researcher M.V. Ptoukha Institute for Demography and Social Studies, NAS of Ukraine

Section: Demographic processes
Language: Ukrainian
Abstract: The demographic situation in Ukraine is characterized by a permanent decrease of population and its dis- torted sex and age composition. The present situation has been caused not so much by the natural course of demographic processes as by the disasters that happened within the territory of the country in the last century which have considerably undermined the demographical potential of Ukraine. For that reason clear understanding of the present situation is impossible without the analysis of not only actual but also hypothetic demographic losses.
The process of studying the population losses caused by the social disasters is significantly complicated due to the lack of a reliable information base. It has resulted from the incomplete recording of events, from the real impossibility to do it and/or purposeful fabrication in order to conceal the actual size of the disaster. Therefore, the assessment of losses from social disasters is mainly based on supposition, and its reliability depends on reliability of the information base.
In this paper the reconstructed continuous series of demographic dynamics of Ukraine over the period of 1850-2012 (representing the results) which are the result of the long-term study of O.P. Rudnitskiy (Ptoukha Institute for Demography and Social Studies of the NAS of Ukraine) are used as the information base. An absolute advantage of this series is its integrity and convertibility in accordance with the current territorial borders of the country. They include sex and age composition of the population at the beginning of every year, sex and age distribution of deaths, distribution of births by age of mother, balance of migration with sex and age distribution and other data.
Additionally, for all social disasters including the Russo-Japanese War (1904–1905), the cholera epi- demic (1910), the First World War (1914 – 1917), the revolution (1918– 1920), the famine (1921–1923), Holodomor (1932–1934), the Great Terror (1937–1938), the Second World War (1939–1945), the famine (1946–1947), the «mortality crisis» (1946 – 1947), transformational reforms (since 1991), direct and indirect losses with sex and age distribution were estimated.
The method of retrospective prognosis was used for calculating the hypothetical losses, the essence of which is to monitor the movement of separate cohorts in accordance with given parameters of fertility and mortality rates.
Two approaches may be used for studying the impact of the social disaster on the present situation. With the first approach we assume that the cohort, defined as the direct loss from the examined disaster, would further live out a real life, i.e. live out all following social disasters. With the second approach, we assume that no other disasters follow the investigated one. In our opinion it is reasonable to use the first approach for studying the impact of a separate disaster on a real situation. When the cumulative impact of all social disasters is examined, it is reasonable to use the second approach. That particular approach was used for performing our calculations. In this case, the migration factor was considered separately. Resulting from the calculations, the hypothetical Ukraine population as well as sex and age composition of it at the beginning of each year was estimated disregarding the impact of social disasters which had taken place in reality over the preceding 116 years. The difference between the hypothetical and actual number represents the hypothetical demographic losses at the beginning of the each year.
At the beginning of 2013 the actual population was 45,4 million people. If under actual demographic trends there had been no social disasters in Ukraine since 1897, the population would have numbered 73,0 million, which is 61% more, disregarding the migration factor, and 79,1 million, which is 74% more, ta- king it into account. Thus, at the beginning of 2013, the total hypothetic losses of Ukraine estimated at 33,7 million people, and 18% are the losses due to migration processes.
Total hypothetical population loss due to the social disasters (27,7 million people) is comprised of hy- pothetical losses from different social disasters. Within this figure, 32,0% of hypothetical losses were caused by the Second World War, and 20,9% – by the Holodomor of 1932–1934. Very significant, in spite of the remoteness in time, is the impact of the revolution (13,7%), the First World War (12,6%) and the famine of 1921–1923 (9,7%). More remote events such as the cholera epidemic and the Russo-Japanese War made insignificant impact on the hypothetical losses (2,6% and less than 1% respectively). The impact of the Great Terror of 1937–1938 is less than 1%, and of the famine of 1946–1947 is 2,9%. The contribution of «mortality crisis» is 5,6%.
The peak of Ukraine population (51,9 million people) fell on the beginning of 1993. That year is also the peak one for the hypothetical population disregarding the migration factor, which is 81,2 million people. With the migration factor considered, the peak of the population shifts to 1990, which is 87,5 million people. The impact of every social disaster on the present situation is stipulated not only by its remoteness in time but also by the direct and indirect losses as well as the further course of demographic processes.
Key words: social disaster, hypothetical demographic losses.
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