How Africa’s young population impacts development


Africa’s population is the youngest in the world and it is the only region where the working-age population is still growing rapidly. From a global perspective, Africa’s demographic potential is often described as being unparalleled. But population growth rates are too high and average economic growth rates too slow in most African countries to reduce poverty rapidly or improve average levels of income.  

This seminar releases a new ISS report and video on how African states can achieve a demographic dividend that would accelerate improvements in livelihoods. Interventions to unlock the continent’s demographic potential will be discussed.

The research report will be available at the seminar.

Chair: Prof Maxi Schoeman, Deputy Dean, Faculty of Humanities, University of Pretoria


Dr Jakkie Cilliers, Head, African Futures and Innovation, ISS

Prof Gilbert Khadiagala, Head, International Relations, WITS University

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