baby boom to bust

For the first time in the history of our planet old people outnumber the young. Looking at what this means for societies around the world, 'Baby Boom to Bust' takes on one of the most pressing and controversial issues of our time.

programme information


2 x 60'

Production Company

NHK & Becker Entertainment





Episode Information

Today, one in ten people is over 60. By 2050 it will be one in five. In some developed countries there are so many elderly people and so few births that the population is actually dying off. Some experts predict our worst nightmares could be just around the corner – a society of frail, chronically ill old people which, coupled with declining birth rates in the West, may mean there simply won’t be enough young people around to foot the bill. But others say that increased life expectancy and lower birth rates are a remarkable success story that enables people in the developed world to live healthier and more productive lives.

This urgent and powerful two-part series explores the dramatic challenges we now face and looks into the future of what former US President Jimmy Carter has called “the most important and controversial issue of the millennium”. The series questions our values, our culture, and what sort of a society we want to live in.

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