Fertility trends and population policy in the canton of Sarajevo

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Reményi, Péter
Gekič, Haris
Bidžan-Gekić, Aida
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The demography of Bosnia and Herzegovina fits into the Southeast-European trends with sub-replacement fertility and high emigration rates. At the national level, natural decline started in 2007, while migration is influenced by the war and its aftermath, as well as several economic and political push factors (low wages, corruption, high unemployment, etc.), and also has a serious impact on birth and death rates. On the other hand, demographic trends in the Canton of Sarajevo differ from the national pattern. It reached sub-replacement fertility more than a decade later (2019), and migration still has a positive balance: besides significant emigration rates, immigration to the Canton, especially from the other parts of Bosnia and Herzegovina, is higher. Since migration involves younger generations, it is also a factor behind the more favourable fertility rates, and can be evaluated as a consequence of better socio-economic development in the capital and its gravitational area.In the Canton, there have been several factors that contributed to the decline of birth rates in the past decades. Changing functions of family and children in the society, increasing women's employment, educational level and career aspirations, growing individualism and rationality, the changing social climate in relation to children, higher personal standards, and other socio-psychological factors should be mentioned. Birth rates were also (positively) influenced by other factors. One of the most important points is that the Canton has certainly one of the best support policies in Bosnia and Herzegovina including financial support and allowances for newborn children, subsidies in preschool education, primary and secondary schools as well as scholarships for pupils and students. Positive economic trends such as new constructions of residential buildings, business, and shopping centres, as well as an even stronger concentration of attractive institutions and activities should be emphasised.In 2021, the total fertility rate accounted for 1.38 in the Canton, while it has shown a great variation among the municipalities. The municipality with the lowest total fertility rate (Novi Grad) had the highest total number of live births in the Canton, while the municipality with the lowest total number of live births (Trnovo) was the only one with total fertility rate values above the replacement level. Due to its demographic, economic and political significance, the Canton of Sarajevo is a key area for population revitalisation in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Therefore, local measures have national significance, and can act as a model for the rest of the country in terms of population policy as well.
demográfia , népesség , Bosznia-Hercegovina , Szarajevo , népességpolitika , népszaporulat
Tér és Társadalom 38 :(1) pp. 88-109. (2024)