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European Population Conference 2014, Budapest, Hungary

The European Population Conference 2014 (EPC 2014) was organized by the European Association for Population Studies (EAPS) in collaboration with the Hungarian Demographic Research Instittute (HDRI).

EPC 2014 was a general population conference and had a special focus on the demographic interpretation and evaluation of the post-communist transition. The conference took place from 25–28 June in Budapest, in the main building of the Corvinus University and (for the Closing and Award Ceremony) in the Upper House Hall of the Parliament.

EPC 2014 was attended by nearly 900 registered participants, coming from almost all European countries and 25 countries from outside of Europe. There were over fifty participants from Germany, Great Britain, Spain and Italy. 21% of the participants arrived from Central and Eastern Europe. Besides Hungarians, this group of countries was most notably represented by Polish researchers (35 visitors), but the number of Czech and Russian demographers also exceeded twenty. Just under one fifth of the participants came from non-European countries. Among these, the largest groups were from the United States (56 participants), Canada (15 people) and Japan (11 people), but there were delegates from Uganda, Mali, Ghana, Singapore and Taiwan, to mention only a few.

In keeping with the traditions of EPCs, presentations covered all major subject areas of demography in the broadest sense.The conference theme "Transitions: Opportunities and Threats"was addressed in the Opening Plenary session and a number of simultaneous sessions. In the opening session David S. Reher (Madrid) spoke about the theory of demographic transition, the possible re-interpretation of this theory and the need for such re-visiting; Melinda Mills (Oxford) offered a new approach to examining family transitions in Europe, France Meslé (Paris) talked about mortality/health crisis in post-communist societies, while the presentation of Zsolt Spéder (Budapest) concerned the Post-Communist Fertility Transition. Another key event of the conference was the plenary lecture by the internationally acknowledged Hungarian demographer Paul Demeny, who spoke on policy challenges of the current demographic situation in Europe.

The conference was paralleled by an impressive number of supplementary academic events. Thus, for instance, exhibition stands were dedicated to the leading demographic research institutes of the world (London, the Hague, Stockholm, Rostock, Paris, Barcelona, Wien, Wiesbaden), while the interactive demographic exhibition by the network ‘Population Europe’ was also presented to the professional community. The closing ceremony took place in the Upper House Hall of the Hungarian Parliament, and the awards of EAPS were also presented there. The laureate of the 2014 EAPS Award for Population Studies was the Belgian demographer Frans Willekens, who currently works in Germany.

Some 530 presentations took place during 116 simultaneous sessions, selected from 1063 submitted abstracts. Most abstracts were submitted from the US, followed by Spain, while the third place went to Germany. 43 abstracts were submitted by Hungarian first authors, which meant places 9–11 in the rank order of countries. As regards subject matter, the most popular topics (with over one hundred titles) were ‘family and household’, ‘fertility’ and ‘international migration’; the demographic characteristics of Central and Eastern Europe and the challenge presented by aging populations for a growing number of countries also received considerable attention.


Wednesday, June 25, 2014 to Saturday, June 28, 2014