Human Capital and Population Development: Pakistan and the “Cannon or Butter” Dilemma

Anne Goujon, Vienna Institute of Demography and International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA)
M. Asif Wazir, International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA)

While education has been emphasized by the government and international agencies to play a central role for the successful development of Pakistan, progress realized have been meager and this for two main reasons: The investments in education have been too low and the population has been growing too fast. The paper shows through the analysis of past and present demographic and education trends, complemented by projections of future levels of educational attainment (using multistate population projection methodology) that Pakistan will fail to achieve the Millennium Development Goals for education and other objectives on the national agenda. The scenarios that we looked at show that the speed of change in advancing education has to be dramatically increased if the country would like to achieve all these goals by mid-century. The study points at two areas of particular concern: illiterate adult population and female education, where investments will be highly needed.

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Presented in Poster Session 5