Course content

The course is an introductory course in demography focusing on developing basic demography methods related to the measurement of vital events. These methods are then applied to study empirically (and theoretically) how demographic and economic changes interact with each other over time. 


The course will cover the following topics:


  • Measures of fertility.

  • Economic/social determinants of fertility.


  • Measures of mortality.

  • How to construct life tables.

  • Economic/social determinants of mortality.

Demographic Transitions:

  • Macro and microeconomic causes and consequences.


  • Measures of migration.

  • Economic/social determinants and consequences of migration.



MSc programme in Economics – elective course

Bacheloruddannelsen i økonomi – valgfag på 3. år

The Danish BSc programme in Economics - elective at the 3rd year

Learning outcome

After completing the course, the student is expected to be able to:



  • Account for fundamental demographic processes and changes experienced by countries during the last two centuries.

  • Account for different economic theories of the Demographic Transition.

  • Explain empirical models used to identify causes/consequences  of changes in e.g. fertility, mortality, and migration.

  • Discuss basic findings in the economic-demography literature with a focus on key demographic variables like fertility, mortality, and migration.



  • Constructs relevant measures of fertility, mortality, and migration using population census data and vital-statistics data.  

  • Analyze how basic demographic variables 1) influence economic variables such as human capital and income, and 2) are being influenced by economic conditions and public infrastructures e.g. clean-water supply, sewerage infrastructure, or information provision.

  • Construct datasets which can be used to study basic demographic issues.



  • Master methodes to analyze the interaction between demographic and economic changes in the process of economic development.
  • Combine theory and empirical knowledge to formulate research designs with the purpose of identifying causes/consequences of demographic changes.  


Related to the lectures, there will be in-class exercises, discussions and student presentations e.g. of journal articles, which should be prepared before class.

In case of a pandemic like Corona the teaching in this course may be changed to be taught either fully or partly online. For further information, see the course room on Absalon.

Selected chapters in “Demographic methods” by Andrew Hinde, Arnold. 
The literature will additionally be based on various journal articles, focusing on the economic causes/consequences of demographic changes in societies.


Knowledge corresponding to the 2nd year on the Bachelor in Economics, Universty of Copenhagen or similar.

2 hours lectures 2 times a week from week 6 to 16/17 (except holidays).

The overall schema for the Master courses and 3rd year courses can be seen at KUnet:
MSc in Economics => "courses and teaching" => "Planning and overview" => "Your timetable"
BA i Økonomi/KA i Økonomi => "Kurser og undervisning" => "Planlægning og overblik" => "Dit skema"

Timetable and venue:
To see the time and location of lectures please press the link under "Timetable"/​"Se skema" at the right side of this page. F means Spring.

You can find the similar information in English at
-Select Department: “2200-Økonomisk Institut” (and wait for respond)
-Select Module:: “2200-F21; [Name of course]””
-Select Report Type: “List – Weekdays”
-Select Period: “Forår/spring – Weeks 5-30”
Press: “ View Timetable”

Please be aware:
- That it is the students´s own responsibility to continuously update themselves about their studies, their teaching, their schedule, their exams etc. through the study pages, the course description, the Digital Exam portal, Absalon, KUnet, myUCPH app, the curriculum etc.

7,5 ECTS
Type of assessment
Written assignment, 3 weeks
The exam is an individual project.

Please be aware of:
• The students has to choose a topic within demography and find suitable data for their project.
• The writing process of the project begins with handing in a project description, that must be approved, where after the student have 3 weeks to write the project paper.
• The project description and the project paper must be written in English.

All aids allowed

for the written project and the project description.


Marking scale
7-point grading scale
Censorship form
No external censorship
for the written exam.
Criteria for exam assessment

Students are assessed on the extent to which they master the learning outcome for the course.


To receive the top grade, the student must with no or only a few minor weaknesses be able to demonstrate an excellent performance displaying a high level of command of all aspects of the relevant material and can make use of the knowledge, skills and competencies listed in the learning outcomes.

Single subject courses (day)

  • Category
  • Hours
  • Lectures
  • 42
  • Preparation
  • 134
  • Project work
  • 30
  • English
  • 206