Demographic Transition and Family-Demographic Policy

Demographic Transition and Family-Demographic Policy

Sinelnikov A.B.

Dr. Sci. (Sociol.), Prof. of the Department of Family Sociology and Demography, Lomonosov Moscow State University, Moscow, Russia

ID of the Article:

The study was carried out with the financial support of the RFBR and BRFFI within the framework of the scientific project No. 20-511-00020 “Features of employment and socialization of persons of retirement age in the Republic of Belarus and the Russian Federation: a comparative sociological analysis”.

For citation:

Sinelnikov A.B. Demographic Transition and Family-Demographic Policy. Sotsiologicheskie issledovaniya [Sociological Studies]. 2021. No 10. P. 83-93


Proponents of the popular demographic transition theory recognize that the transformation of the social institution of the family has led to depopulation in Russia and in many other countries, and in the future will lead to the same consequences throughout the world. They claim that depopulation will stop sometime, but they do not explain how and why this will happen. Proponents of this theory consider changes in the social institution of the family, including a decrease in the number of children, not as a crisis, but as an irreversible modernization. Herefrom, they conclude that any government attempts to increase the birth rate are ineffective. Therefore, family and demographic policy cannot be based on the theory of demographic transition. Such a basis can be the concept of the institutional crisis of the family, which recognizes the possibility of overcoming this crisis and indicates ways out of it. Family and demographic policy should contribute to an increase in the number of legal marriages, a decrease in the number of divorces, an increase in the birth rate and the preservation of ties between generations. Measures to reduce mortality and regulate migration are necessary, but they do not solve the problem of depopulation and are not part of family-demographic policy.

demographic transition; birth rate; mortality; depopulation; social norm; marriage; cohabitation; voluntary childlessness; family crisis; family-demographic policy
Content No 10, 2021