Around 2,000 population scientists, policymakers, civic organisation and government leaders from around the world will assemble in Cape Town at the end of October to discuss the latest population research and debate pressing global and regional population issues.
Dr Lehohla said the conference will strengthen demographic training in South Africa and offer international population scientists the opportunity to assess the results of the 2010 Round of Censuses, in which more than 40 African countries participated, and make recommendations that will benefit these countries.
The details of how fish population scientists come up with the estimates that are then plugged into a computer model, the limitations of the model, and the questionable use put to the numbers generated go beyond the scope of this column.
Since 1952, the Population Council has sustained a commitment to the goal of training population scientists from developing countries.
New global issues--the expansion of international migration, aging populations, persistent poverty, preservation of the environment, and the HIV/AIDS epidemic--have eclipsed the historical focus of population scientists on describing and explaining population growth and fertility decline.
Despite the great need for population scientists, particularly ones from the developing world, a critical change in the population field that occurred in the mid-1990s has made it more difficult to train population scientists.
Population organizations and universities should provide previously trained population scientists with opportunities for continuing education in the form of midcareer training.