Demographic rules

Age and productivity have an out-sized effect on the global economy. The challenge of the next hundred years is to figure out how fewer workers can support an increasingly older population. Greg Ip wrote an in-depth exploration in The Wall Street Journal of how shifting demographics are changing the global economy.

Ever since the global financial crisis, economists have groped for reasons to explain why growth in the U.S. and abroad has repeatedly disappointed, citing everything from fiscal austerity to the euro meltdown. They are now coming to realize that one of the stiffest headwinds is also one of the hardest to overcome: demographics.

Well, this is depressing. I used to think I was one of the young ones, but it turn out I’m older than 51% of the world’s population, according to data from I still have a ways to go before I’m older than half the people in the United States, and I live in Florida, so I’ve got that going for me too.

ScreenClip [1] is a data visualization project that takes demographic and population data from a variety of sources to present personalized graphs. Here’s how the project’s creators describe it. aims to make demography – the study of human populations – accessible to a wider audience. We believe that demographic data can play an important role in understanding the social and economic developments of our time. Our hope is that people from all walks of life, in all ages and across all countries will explore a new perspective of their own life and find their own place in the world of today and tomorrow.

Here are a couple of other interesting factoids I learned about my age in relation to the global population:

  • On May 24, 2017, I’ll be the 4 billionth person on the planet
  • I’m older than 40% of the US population
  • I share a birthday with 319, 574 other people (13,315 of whom were born during the same hour)
  • My estimated death day is August 2, 2067 (That date is marked in my calendar thanks to the site’s handy iCal download–morbid I know)

It seems I still have many years ahead of me–52.7 years–based on the average life expectancy of men in the US.

ScreenClip [2]

You can enter your birthday along with some other basic information into to find out where you fit age-wise into the global family.