On human carrying capacity: A review essay on Joel Cohen's: How Many People Can the Earth Support?

MacKellar FL (1996). On human carrying capacity: A review essay on Joel Cohen's: How Many People Can the Earth Support? Population and Development Review 22 (1): 145-156.

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Abstract

Joel Cohen's eagerly awaited and broadly disseminated book is erudite, suffused with the ethical dimension of population policy, and comprehen- sive-touching on everything from paleodemography to AIDS, the theory of fertility decline, international population policy, and more. On these grounds, if a scientifically literate friend asked you for one book to read about population, this would be a good suggestion. The book is, as its au- thor promises us in the Introduction, "neither an alarmist tract nor a cornucopian lullaby" (p. 12), and that is precisely the sort of responsible balance we expect from a leading researcher in the field. The style of the book is breezy and irrepressible; some will like it, others will not. I found myself wishing that the editor had excised the chattiness, but readers with stronger nerves may thrive on it.

Having been assured that the volume is basically sound, readers of this journal will wish to know whether it makes a scientific contribution or sheds new light on policy questions. Here, How Many People Can the Earth Support? is a study in contrasts....

Item Type: Article
Research Programs: World Population (POP)
Bibliographic Reference: Population and Development Review; 22(1):145-156 (March 1996)
Depositing User: IIASA Import
Date Deposited: 15 Jan 2016 02:06
Last Modified: 24 Feb 2016 16:56
URI: http://pure.iiasa.ac.at/4628

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