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As countries have developed there has been a trend towards smaller family sizes. Why does this happen? How does this affect society?

Many countries around the world are becoming richer as they develop and at the same time these countries are seeing a reduction in the size of the family unit. This essay will discuss the reasons for this phenomenon and examine some of the possible effects it will have on society.
One of the principal reasons for smaller family units is birth control. As a country develops and becomes richer, birth control becomes more readily available. This may be due to a rise in the number of medical clinics or the distribution of free contraception. The result of this is that people can choose family size. Another important factor is the rise in the levels of education that occur as a country develops, which means that women are more educated and more likely to be working. Consequently, many will want to delay having children and so will likely have fewer in the long-term. 
This can impact on society in a number of ways. One positive effect is that the population will fall, which will likely result in less poverty as there will be less competition for scarce resources. The parents can also provide a better education to their children as it will cost less, which will benefit society as a whole. A possible negative impact is that there will be fewer younger people in the workforce in the future, thus making the sustainability of future economic growth less certain.
In conclusion, family size has fallen due to birth control and education, and this can impact on debt, access to resources, and economic growth. Regardless of any impacts, this trend is likely to continue as countries around the world develop and become wealthier.

 

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