Pop Pov



Jonathan Torgovnik

The Population Reference Bureau (PRB) has begun a new stage in its partnership with the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation’s Population and Poverty Research Initiative (PopPov). With renewed funding from the Hewlett Foundation, PRB will shift its focus to engaging policy audiences with results from PopPov funded projects and related research. PRB staff will also build researchers’ and advocates’ capacity to communicate these results.

Since 2006, PRB has partnered with the Hewlett Foundation in implementing the PopPov initiative to develop evidence on the economic impact of population dynamics and reproductive health while reinvigorating interest in economic demography. From 2006 through 2010, PRB managed the solicitation and administration of research grants for U.S.-based researchers and their international partners. PRB also organized research meetings and workshops for researchers and stakeholders as the network grew. In 2011, PRB officially took on the role of PopPov Secretariat to work more closely with European funding partners in the initiative and to disseminate research findings as they developed.

In the PopPov Research Network, over 100 researchers have addressed research questions relevant to social, health, and economic issues in more than 70 countries. Their work has shed light on pathways through which fertility, health, and population growth affect economic growth (as measured by gross domestic product, GDP) at the national level. Other work has provided insight on the relationships between fertility histories, reproductive health, and girls’ education; and women’s labor force participation and their economic contributions to the household.

Mission & History

The PopPov network is a group of academic researchers, funders, and other stakeholders from around the globe that is interested in how population dynamics (population growth, decline, aging, etc.,) impact economic outcomes. While there is a strong desire among national governments in low- and middle-income countries to accelerate economic growth and reduce poverty, a lack of knowledge about the determinants of economic growth and the factors that lead to exit from poverty may reduce the ability for policies and programs to effectively address the issue. The network is most interested in how population policies can be used for poverty reduction at the household level and economic growth at the country/state level.

Researchers within the network have contributed a substantial body of work on population dynamics, sexual and reproductive health, family planning, and economic development. Research results continue to emerge as projects started in 2013 come to a close. The Secretariat and network members continue to increase the salience and impact of PopPov-supported research and the research agenda among policy audiences with:

  • Participation of researchers and Secretariat staff in UNECA and AUC technical consultation meetings on the demographic dividend, youth, and women in Africa.
  • Researchers’ presentations at international economic development meetings in the United States and the United Kingdom.
  • Researchers’ contribution to high-level policy dialogue through presentations to the UN Commission on Population and citation of their work in World Bank, World Health Organization, and United Nations issue reports.
  • In-country collaborations between researchers and stakeholders in government, non-governmental organizations, and private sector.

Project Staff & Contact Information

Hanna Christianson, Program Associate
Elizabeth Gay, Senior Policy Analyst
Peter Goldstein, Vice President of Communications and Marketing
Marlene Lee, Senior Program Director, Global Partnerships

Please contact us at poppov@prb.org.

Participating Institutions Over the Years

Agence Française de Développement, France

African Economic Research Consortium, Africa

Economic and Social Research Council, United Kingdom

Institut de Recherche pour le Développement, France

Institute of International Education, United States

NWO/WOTRO, Netherlands

Population Reference Bureau, United States

Research Council of Norway, Norway

The Center for Global Development, United States

The World Bank

William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, United States