Demography and Growth Planning (DGP)


Analysing and understanding the complex causes and consequences of population change in sparsely populated areas to inform policy and local decision making.



The Demography and Growth Planning team builds knowledge and expertise on the relationship between the dynamic populations of remote and sparsely populated areas and the economic, social and political conditions that prevail in those regions.

The team are experts in analysing and understanding the causes and consequences of population change in sparsely populated areas. Their research extends across the key fields of demography, economics, epidemiology, labour studies, history and sociology.

The team’s research focuses on remote places in developed nations, including the Northern Territory, but their reach is global. The team has active hubs in Darwin, Queensland, South Australia, Victoria, Sweden, and Canada– and research networks extending across northern Europe, North America and Australasia.

Explaining population change and its consequences, as well as anticipating future population dynamics, is at the core of their work. The team collaborates with other universities, government agencies, non-government agencies and research organisations from around the world to explore the big issues affecting communities, regions and their peoples. This work contributes to better informed policy and decision-making, leading to improved economic and social wellbeing.

The Demography and Growth Planning team work closely with the Northern Territory Department of Treasury and Finance on research for the north of Australia, and, in particular, for the Northern Territory. They also have numerous active Australian Competitive Grants on improving subnational population forecasts, the demographic consequences of migration to, from and within Australia, and improved Indigenous population projections for policy and planning.



Researchers have developed the Beyond Periphery model that describes how sparsely populated areas are different from other geographical contexts. It explains why particular demographic and economic outcomes arise, and helps anticipate the demographic impacts of public policy and other initiatives. Critically, the Beyond Periphery model helps explain the causes, flows and consequences of the movements of people and other resources to, from, and within, sparsely populated areas.


Contact the team directly to discuss your needs at

The team are recognised internationally for their work. Snapshots of findings are made freely accessible through the Northern Institute Research Briefs Series

Our blog demographyNorth is a great way to find our latest research and analysis on critical population issues.

We also host the online open-access journal, Australian Population Studies.

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