We are excited to introduce Vantage Point, a video series that shares critical conversations on urgent development issues in Africa. The series provides in-depth, analytical, contextual & evidence-informed discussions on tackling Africa’s urgent development issues by experts, government officials, and the people who experience these issues.

In the 1st edition of Vantage Point, experts from AFIDEP and the University of Southampton discuss the demographic dividend, or how African countries can take advantage of their youthful populations to accelerate economic growth.

The demographic dividend has received tremendous attention by African leaders in the recent past as an important framework that could spur socio-economic development on the continent. The demographic dividend refers to the accelerated economic growth that is initiated by a rapid decline in fertility and mortality that results in a change in the age structure from one dominated by child dependents to one dominated by economically productive working adults.

In January this year, for example, the theme for the 2017 African Union Summit, “Harnessing the Demographic Dividend through Investments in the Youth” was launched, signifying a positive ideological move towards the uptake of the framework at the regional level. This was important especially since the Summit convenes decision-makers, development partners, the civil society and the media. The adoption of the framework for the Summit therefore offers a great opportunity to strengthen advocacy among African Heads of States to make critical policy reforms and investments that will enable them to use their youthful populations to accelerate economic growth and improve the lives of their citizens.

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