POPULATION AGEING, PUBLIC POLICY, AND FAMILY
2018/2019, Semester 2
Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy (Lee Kuan Yew School Of Public Policy)
Modular Credits: 4
This course covers policy issues of modern ageing societies, with special emphases on families and comparisons between Asian and Western countries. To tackle the complex issues, we discuss both relevant theories and empirical evidence from various disciplines. The first part investigates demographic causes of population ageing–decreased fertility and extended longevity. The second part reviews public old-age support programs and discuss their challenges. We also describe policy options to mitigate the consequences of population ageing, and assess the effectiveness of the policies. The third part examines why families provide elder support, and how public and private old-age provisions are interrelated.
PP5223. Population Ageing, Public Policy, and Family
National University of Singapore
Semester 2, AY 2018/2019
Class Times: Mondays 2:00-5:00PM
Class Location: SR3-4
Instructor: Erin Hye-Won Kim, Assistant Professor in LKYSPP
Office: LKS #02-04
Office hour: By appointment (office)
This course covers policy issues of modern ageing societies, with special emphases on social policy, families, and comparisons between Asian countries and Western countries. To tackle the complex issues, we discuss both relevant theories and empirical evidence from various disciplines including sociology, economics, public health, and human biology. The first section investigates the underlying causes of population ageing and presents trends in population age distributions around the globe. In the second section, we review old-age support provided by the government, the family, and the elderly themselves, and discuss challenges of providing the support. Lastly, the third section describes policy options to mitigate the consequences of population ageing, and evaluates the policies.
By the end of this course, students should be able to:
Define key demographic measures and use them to describe demographic trends.
Explain causes of population ageing.
Illustrate major public old-age support programs and discuss their challenges.
Explain why families provide elder support, compare the support across societies, and analyze how the private support relates to public elder support.
List and evaluate policy options to mitigate the consequences of population ageing.
Examine policy issues with critical thinking and inter-disciplinary approaches.
Communicate policy analysis through oral presentations and written reports.
Comprehend and take advantage of statistics and empirical arguments.
No textbook is required for this course. Instead, reading assignments will be available via IVLE or handed out in class in advance.
There are no prerequisites for this course.
Trends in / causes of aging
Decline in fertility
Decline in mortality and extended longevity
Who takes care of the elderly?
Others and Synthesis
Presentation / policy memo on country case study (I)
Policies to raise fertility and their efficiency
Other policy options and their efficiency
Presentation / policy memo on country case study (II)
Public policy and management experience
Capstone case (I)
Capstone case (II)
Capstone case (III)
Presentation #2 on country case study (III)
Policy memo #2 due 1 May (Wed.)
Country / region of your choice
Grading and Course Expectations
Reading assignments and class participation (30%).
Class participation will be based on attendance and regular and constructive participation in class discussion. Students should read assigned reading materials and be prepared to participate in active discussion. Feedback on class participation will be provided on a regular basis.
The class participation grade will be an aggregate grade based on an average of all the classes in the module, with the two lowest scores being dropped before this is calculated. Medical leave with a valid medical certificate or absence with valid reasons will not count in the scoring. Absence from class without good reasons will be counted as zero participation.
Full attendance: best 10 out of 12 scores (12 scores only excluding Week 1 out of total 13 weeks)
Medical leave with medical certificate or absence with valid reason for one class: best 9 out of the 11 classes attended.
Absent without good reason for 1 class: best 10 out of 12 scores (the missing day will be 0)
Two presentations (15 + 15 = 30%)
. Each student has to make two in-class presentations on two case studies (case study I or II AND case study III). The presentations will be team assignments (in a team of about 4 students). Detailed information on each case study and guidelines for the presentations will be discussed in advance.
Case study (I): Korea’s elder-support systems (Week 7)
Case study (II): Japan’s policies to cope with population aging (Week 10)
Case study (III): Singapore’s Population White Paper (Week 13)
Two policy memos (15 + 25 = 40%)
Students will write two policy memos, which should be a good mix of own ideas and learning from this class. Each memo is about 10-page-long (double-spaced, excluding references and tables/figures). Further guidelines for the memos will be discussed in advance.
Policy memo #1
): Students in teams (of about 3 students) write one policy memo on one case study, case study I or II, which the student did not present on.
Policy memo #2
, due 1 May, Wed.
: Each student will write a policy memo on a policy question, which relates to course materials and interests you for a country / region of your choice.
** Students should submit the presentations and memos
to IVLE by noon on due dates
hard copies (of the same contents with the IVLE submissions, one copy per team) in the beginning of the class
. One exception is no need to submit the hard copy of policy memo #2 (IVLE submission only).
Students in this class should adhere to NUS Honour Code, which can be found at
. In addition, the LKY School’s Code of Conduct (
) lists academic integrity as one of its six important values. Violations of these codes in any form, including cheating in exams and plagiarism, will not be tolerated and will immediately lead to the student getting zero marks and follow-up action.
Plagiarism includes copying all or any part of your classmate’s assignments. To avoid giving the impression that you are passing off other people’s work as your own, you will need to acknowledge conscientiously the sources of information, ideas, and arguments used in your paper. For this purpose, you will use the ‘footnote style’ according to the Chicago Manual of Style, the guidelines for which can be found online at
in the companion website for Diana Hacker’s
A Writer’s Reference
. Please also refer to the handout that was given to you at the Workshop on Plagiarism conducted during the Orientation period.
Workload Components : A-B-C-D-E
A: no. of lecture hours per week
B: no. of tutorial hours per week
C: no. of lab hours per week
D: no. of hours for projects, assignments, fieldwork etc per week
E: no. of hours for preparatory work by a student per week