NZ Government Busts Population Myths

Awesome find from Llew who discovered the cracking Myth Busters at the NZ Governments Population and Sustainable Development site.

How cool that the dusty old beaurocrats are able to use popular culture to get their message across ... ok, ok, civil servants don't go to work in bowler hats any more but it still hard to have public facing fun in any government - top work people!
Analysts in the Population Statistics Unit hear often repeated statements that make us:
  • shake our heads in despair
  • scratch our heads in thought
  • or just yell no!
On these pages we will examine the stories behind some of the common "population myths" (facts, fudges and fallacies) and subject them to a range of ingenious tests. We may also throw out a few challenges to our fellow analysts to provide evidence to support or refute claims linking population trends with economic trends.

We hope to clarify some areas of confusion, bury some misconceptions and encourage some debate.

Myth 1: Half of all marriages end in divorce

Myth 2: There was a surge of returning New Zealanders after 9/11

Myth 3: "The browning of New Zealand"

Myth 4: New Zealand women are now having their first baby at age 30

Myth 5: New Zealand's population is only growing because of migration

Myth 6: "In 2003 four of every five pregnant Asian women aborted their babies"

Myth 7: The average life expectancy of males is 6 years less than females

Myth 8: New Zealand has 3 million people and 60 million sheep

Myth 9: The Brain Drain

Myth 10: There are at least 1 million New Zealanders living overseas

Myth 11: "There are more people alive now than have ever lived"

Myth 12: "New Zealand is in the midst of a baby boom"


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