Publication:
Demographic trends in the European Union: political and strategic implications

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Authors
Rasco, Clark Joseph
Subjects
Demography
European Union
EU
Birthrate
Worker-to-pensioner-ratio
Pension
Pension reform
Pay-as-you-go pension
Declining population
Population growth
Population
Pyramid
Population implosion
Youth bulge
NATO
Military capabilities gap
Immigration
Anti-immigration
Assimilation
Integration
Migration
Nationalism
National identity
Hijab
Anti-Muslim legislation
Terrorism
Islam
Muslim
Islamic fundamentalism
Advisors
Yost, David S.
Date of Issue
2004-06
Date
June 2004
Publisher
Monterey California. Naval Postgraduate School
Language
Abstract
This thesis analyzes adverse demographic trends in the European Union, including sub-replacement birthrates and increasing median ages. It investigates the implications of these trends for the EU's prospects for becoming a stronger and more influential actor in international affairs. Pressures arising from population trends in and near the EU could ultimately affect national and EU cohesion, governmental effectiveness, and social stability. Absent remedial measures, social programs in some EU countries will be unsustainable due to the mounting financial burden of pensions and health care for growing elderly populations. Such financial obligations hinder funding other national programs, including modernized military capabilities. Nationalism and national identity are at issue in immigrant integration and assimilation efforts. The role of population trends with regard to the growing threat of radical Islamic fundamentalism is explored. The thesis concludes with policy recommendations that might be considered to avert the looming economic, social, and security crises that may result from these demographic trends. In short, the security and financial consequences foreshadowed by the current demographic trends of an aging, economically weaker, and socially conflicted European Union could present dramatic implications for the vital national interests of the United States.
Type
Thesis
Description
Series/Report No
Department
Department of National Security Affairs
Organization
Naval Postgraduate School (U.S.)
Identifiers
NPS Report Number
Sponsors
Funder
Format
x, 47 p.
Citation
Distribution Statement
Approved for public release; distribution is unlimited.
Rights
This publication is a work of the U.S. Government as defined in Title 17, United States Code, Section 101. Copyright protection is not available for this work in the United States.
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