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Graying Societies-Italy

Updated on May 22, 2014

While the world worries about over-population, all around the world, we are now having less and less children. Italy, as in many countries around the world are finding themselves with an ever graying population. For many reasons the population has really slowed down its growth causing concerns of how the country will fair as the youngsters are out-numbered by the elderly generations. The world’s over population has brought many measures to lower reproduction rate, although it seems trouble is boiling because of the choices. America will be experience the same occurrence soon as the “baby boomer” generation drifts into their golden stage of life, this is one of the reason health care jobs are on the rise.

From the first moment of pondering the problem they will face, the first thing I could think of was to bring in outsiders to fulfill the jobs that will be needed, as well as care for the ever aging population, however this will just not do. Locals of Italy do not want to lose culture with an abundance of outsiders coming in. With legislature and incentive policies not working, the country is going to need some young blood to share the burden of the older generations steping out of the work place. A thought that is related to immigration would be for the country to adopt more children, hopefully gaining them more accepting of outsiders. Yes, the blood line would slacken, however the cultures could be taught to the children, keeping it well and alive.

Another idea that I would entertain is not to grow the population, but to find a way for the Italian people to deal with the smaller numbers. “Rapid population aging in Japan has led to rising demands for informal care” (Harick, J, 2004). Like Italy, Japan ran out of room and as a society, lowered their population. Also like Italy, Japan had little desire to bring outsiders in to disrupt their way of life, so they moved in with their kids. Something also that our week’s reading suggests was that health benefits of living in over-populated areas was not safe, however they could not explain the cause of Japan’s high life expectancy. Studies have shown reasons to be diet and the prevalence of multi-generational living.

Multi-generational living has not only been tied to extended life expectancy, it has also been shown to improve quality of life for the whole family, not just the elderly counterparts. This style of living takes less money to survive per person, as well as uses less resource. Child care and elderly care can be accomplished at home, taking away need for outside jobs of this sort. With less people to work, production will go down, however with multi-generational living lowers need, in a way balancing each other out. With less people, more natural resource is available per person, so maybe the answer isn’t more people, just smarter living.


Monrelss, H (2004) Health Behaviors of Japanese differ in multigenerational families. Woman’s Health Weekly. Pg 53

Wright, Richard & Boorse, Dorothy (2011) Environmental Science.Toward a Sustainable Future. 11e. Pearson Education


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    • Support Med. profile image

      Support Med. 5 years ago from Michigan

      This is an interesting hub. However, I would have hoped you expanded more on the subject. Seems you rushed the ending, so to speak. Not saying it's bad -- it's a great hub :) - this is one of the top ten topics I do believe. Could be one reason why many Americans are adopting. As you stated, this is also a great time for "multi-generational living" - however, it does not seem that many Americans are successfully doing that. Voted up!!