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GeoFRED reveals the aging of the world

GeoFRED is a young addition to the FRED family, and this first map uses that newer technology to reveal something about our collective age: specifically, the percentage of the population over 65 years of age in 2014, per the World Bank. The darker regions represent higher percentages of an older population. Western countries and advanced economies in general have significantly higher percentages of those over 65 than do many countries in Africa, Asia, and South America. In Germany and Italy, more than 20% of the population is over 65—a trend typical for countries with long life expectancies, low death rates, high levels of education, and good health care.

This older segment of the population wasn’t as large 10 years ago. The 2004 map below shows that no country had more than 20% of its population over 65. Longer lives, migration, and fewer children per woman have changed both sides of this ratio: many more people over 65 and only a slight increase in population, if not a decrease in some countries.

How these maps were created: On the GeoFRED page, click on “Tools” and expand the “Choose Data” section. Under “Data” search for “Population” and select “Population ages 65 and above.” After the population map is loaded, it will default to the most recent year of data available. Expand the “Edit Legend” section, change the number of classes to 4, and manually set the interval values. To change the sample year for the second graph, expand the “Choose Data” section and adjust the date.

Suggested by Yvetta Fortova.

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