Fertility Growth

The first association of fertility and growth is likely the growing of fertility rates in a country or region. Only macro economists associate the growth or decline of fertility with the macroeconomic consequences of more or less economic growth. Countries with higher fertility rates in most cases have higher growth rates as parents spend more on food, clothes, mobility and education. Accommodations are changed, adapted and refurbished. Estimates of increased consumption per child by economists range from 500.000 to almost 1 million in the highest developed countries. Children are a country’s wealth, but they also cost a fortune in monetary terms. Good news for the economy if families keep spending independent of economic cycles. More children keeps dedicated shops running or even a whole sector of the economy. In recessions the downward pressure in this sector becomes an additional challenge not only for the families but with ripples-on effects for the whole economy and society. If you see shops closing which has sold furniture for children for the last 15 years then the realization of an economic downturn becomes also more real. Sometimes the parallels in the news of declining fertility and increases in pensions do not square well with the fitness for the future or the future orientation of a society. Democratic voting rights that give families more weight in elections could change this. It is not yet on the political agenda.

Clearing Rubbish

Just next to the Circular Line “Ringbahn” and the Gasometer in Berlin there is yet another huge area in preparation for further construction. The “Berlin Südkreuz” train station connects by ICE directly to Leipzig, Nurnberg and Munich. New company headquarters have been built in the direct neighbourhood and several housing blocks. Clearing more areas that mainly stocked rubbish like broken cars over years had to move out and thousands of people will be able to find new homes soon. Demand for such projects is still high, although the financing with high interest rates has become a challenge for private persons. Interesting building concepts have been realized in the district of Berlin with some focus on social and inclusive housing in a broad sense. A process of gentrification is also observable, whereby the higher rent in the district pushes out people and families that no longer can afford the increases, most of them even above inflation rates in the past few years.
The urban planning advances in large strides. With the almost finished Gasometer the vision from the visitors’ platform on the top will soon allow to observe the next construction site. Clearing rubbish is already a good step ahead. Getting rid of the pollution and contaminated ground will take some time as well.
In the East of Germany, the sun rises early and so do construction workers. We expect to continue to be early birds in this area. Maybe we can have a few additional trees, schools and a kindergarden as well for the newcomers. The whole local infrastructure will be put to yet another test. You have to like change and embrace the continuing challenge of becoming more densely populated in Berlin. It is a social lab right in our neighbourhood. The “Rote Insel” is clearing out its rubbish, the number of buggies with babies is rising fast now.

Ant population

Studying ant populations is a fascinating topic. Structures of these populations reveal various functions, each pursuing its own goals. Albeit the whole system is not breaking down due to well organised ways of communication. From a bird’s perspective human populations appear a bit similar to ant populations. Maybe our sets of tools we use for building accommodation for our species have an extended repertory. Our mass media might facilitate instant spreading of messages to all members of a specific community and even beyond our own hive. Watching a video of people moving around on a large square,

we are puzzled that there are almost no accidents occurring even over longer time spells. Speed adjustment is key. Respect for the other person’s trajectory is yet another precondition for the sake of the benefits for all. Even different modes of transport bicycles, scooters and the tram find their way crossing the square.
There seems to be an optimal way of adaptation to the more or less crowded place. A construction site may restrict the available space, but the crowd has little choice but to circumvent the obstacle. Climate or simple weather change necessitate adaptations. On a warm autumn day many persons decide to walk after work or school. The physiology of the population has an impact on speed patterns. Communication and meeting people is another function of the square. All these parameters are important elements of urban planning and a city’s adaptation to climate change. Cooling trees will structure meeting points and walking paths if there is too much sunshine in summer. Adaptation is easy if you start to adapt early.