NCERT Solutions for Class 12 Geography Chapter 2 - The World Population

Question 1:

Which one of the following continents has the highest growth of population:

  1. Africa
  2. Africa
  3. Africa
  4. North America

(d) North America

Question 2:

Which one of the following is not an area of sparse population?

  1. The Atacama
  2. Equatorial Region
  3. South-East Asia
  4. Polar Regions

(d) Polar Regions

Question 3:

Which of the following is not a push factor:

  1. Water shortage
  2. Unemployment
  3. Medical/Educational facilities
  4. Epidemics

(c) Medical/Educational facilities

Question 4:

Which one of the following is not a fact?

  1. Human population increased more than ten times during the past 500 years
  2. It took more than a million years for the human population to attain the one billion mark.
  3. It took 100 years for the population to rise from five billions to six billions
  4. Population growth is slow in the first stage of demographic transition.

(c) It took 100 years for the population to rise from five billions to six billions

Question 5:

Name three geographical factors that influence the distribution of population.

  1. Availability of Water : River valleys are densely populated areas of the world.
  2. Landforms. Mountains and plateaus are sparsely populated areas but plains are densely populated.
  3. Climate. Deserts and cold polar areas are sparsely populated, but temperate region is densely populated.
Question 6:

There are a number of areas with high population density in the world. Why does this happen?


High density of population is found due to the following reasons :

  1. Development of Agriculture such as in S.E. Asia. and East-Asia. These areas have favourable climate, fertile soils, long growing season and irrigation facilities.
  2. Industrial development such as in Western-Europe and North-East U.S.A.. These areas have rich mineral deposits, industries, urbanisation and high standard of living.
Question 7:

What are the three components of population change?


There are three components of population change.

  1. Births : Crude birth rate

  2. Deaths : Crude Death rate

  3. Migration : When people move from one place to another.
Question 8:

Birth rate and Death rate.


Question 9:

Distinguish between Push factors and Pull factors of migration.


Question 10:

What do you understand by ‘‘Density of population’’ ? On what factors does the density of population depend ? Give examples.


Define ‘Population density’. Explain any four geographical factors that affect the distribution of population in the world.


Define the term Density of population. Explain four geographical factors affecting the distribution of population in the world, with examples.


Density of Population. Density of population is a ratio between the number of people and the area of the land. Density of population is expressed as number of persons per sq. kilometre or per sq. mile.

In simple form, an average population is shown by density of population. Density of population gives a better idea of distribution of population. The density of population depends upon a number of factors—Geographical, Economic, Social and Cultural.

  1. Geographical Factors
    1. Landforms. Relief of land means the presence of mountains, plains and plateaus. Most of the world population is found in plains. Lowlands, river valleys and coastal plains support 80% of the world population. The Indo-Gangetic plain, Hwang Ho plain (China) are the examples of dense population. Plains offer the facilities of agriculture, irrigation, transport and trade. Mountains are sparsely populated areas. There is lack of level land and agriculture; Mountains repel settlement due to cold climate and inaccessibility; like the Andes, the Rockies and the Himalayas.
    2. Climate. Climate is probably the greatest deciding factor. The deserts like the Sahara are sparsely populated due to low rainfall. Therefore, there is total absence of population in Antarctica and the Tundra due to very low temperatures. The areas of cool temperate climate Mediterranean and Moonsoon climate are densely populated due to favourable climate. N.W. Europe And S.E. Asia have dense population due to stimulant climate. About 4/5th of the world population is found in the cool temperate latitudes.
    3. Soil. Deep, fertile soils are suitable for agriculture. River valleys, deltas and lowlands are the most productive areas. River valleys of S.E. Asia are densely populated areas. The island of Java has a high density of population due to fertile soil. About 70% population of Indonesia is found in Java. There is sparse population in equatorial region due to leaching of soils.
    4. Availability of Water. People prefer to live in areas where fresh water is easily available. Water is used for drinking, bathing and cooking and also for cattle, crops, industries and navigation. The ancient civilisations grew up in the river valleys. River valleys are most density populated areas, but deserts are sparsely populated due to shortage of water.
  2. Historical Factors. Places of historical interest become centres of population. Indo-gangetic plain and Nile valley are regions of dense population.
  3. Political Factors. Political factors affect the distribution of population. Australia is an empty continent due to White Australian Policy.
  4. Religious and Social factors. The religious and social factors affect the growth of population. Islam allows polygamy and early marriage which leads to increase in population. The need for a male successor and security in old age results in population-growth. However, Family Planning has reduced the growth rate in many countries.
  5. Economic Factors :
    1. Agriculture. Productive areas can generally support dense population. In South-East Asia, three crops a year are obtained in rice-cultivating areas. Therefore, Monsoon regions have high density of population in agricultural area.
    2. Industries. Industries provide livelihood to many people. Industrial towns become clusters of population. North-West Europe and Kobe-Osaka region (Japan) are densely populated areas because of the industrial development.
    3. Means of Transportation. Means of transportation affect industries, agriculture and trade of a region. Areas with developed means of transportation attract population. Many towns have grown up along Trans Siberian Railway Line. Inaccessible areas like mountains are sparsely populated.
    4. Urban Development. Urban towns have all the facilities of education, recreation, trade, transport and employment. People from rural areas migrate to towns. Mega cities attract large number of migrants.
Question 11:

Write a note on Demographic Transition. State main Characteristics of each.


What is demographic cycle ? Describe three stages of demographic transition theory.


Demographic Transition. Current demographic trends reveal that the annual average population increase among the developing countries is more than 20 times than that in the developed world. Although the CDR’s (Crude Death Rates) in both groups are low, the average CBRs (Crude Birth Rates) in developing countries are nearly three times more than that of the developed countries.
F.W. Notestein shows the Demographic Transition Model correlating changes in popualtion dynamics with industrialization and urbanization.

  1. The first stage.
    Main Characteristics :
    1. The common characteristic is that the population is relatively small and stable over time.
    2. Both the birth and the death rates are very high, but the death rates decline during periods of prosperity, and rises during times of famines, disease or war. People practise Agriculture.
    3. Life expectancy is low. People have low level of technology.
    4. People are illiterate.
  2. The second stage. Main Characteristics :
    1. The industrial revolution resulted in better diets and higher living standards, particularly in cities as sanitation and public health systems developed.
    2. Such progress led to steady decline in death rates.
    3. Birth rates, however, remained high in initial periods of prosperity and only later began to decline as living conditions continued to improve.
    4. As the gap between high birth rates and declining death rates widens, population grows rapidly.

  3. Third stage. Main Characteristics :
    1. In the third stage, both birth and death rates decline appreciably.
    2. Birth rates fluctuate at times, turning lower during periods of economic difficulty and higher during periods of prosperity.
    3. Population becomes urbanised, literate, and high technical know-how.