by Robert E. Wright
At 5,347,600, the 2014 population of Scotland is 8.3% of the UK and 1.1% of the EU.
Scotland is a low growth country, demographically, averaging 0.1% growth annually over the century to 2014.
Scotland's fertility rate (1.62) is below the UK but above the EU average.
Scotland is an "excess mortality"country - with lower life expectancy than should be expected given its socio-economic circumstances.
Population shares for different age groups are similar for Scotland, the UK and EU.
In 1951, life expectancy at birth was 68.7 years for women and 64.4 years for men. By 2007, it had risen to 79.7 years for women and 74.8 years for men.
Beginning around the year 2000, net-migration became positive. Historically high levels of net-migration of +25-30,000 people per year were achieved by mid-decade. This increase was primarily driven by immigrants from the ten countries, mostly central European nations, that joined the European Union in 2004.
Population projections suggest that the UK will increase by 21.5% in the period 2014 to 2054, which means an addition of nearly 14 million people. The projections suggest that the population of Scotland is expected to grow by only 7.8% in the same period, or by less than half a million people. If accurate, the Scottish share of the total UK population will fall from 8.3% to 7.3%.
For the full chapter, please see: Wright, R.E. (2017) The Changing Scottish Population. In Gibb, K., Maclennan, D., McNulty, K., & Comerford, M. (eds) Scottish Economy - A Living Book. London: Routledge. Available via this link.
Figure 5.1: Scotland's Population Over Time
- All data comes from the National Records of Scotland's population estimates time series dataset
Figure 5.2: Total Fertility Rate
- Data comes from the National Records of Scotland the the ONS
Figure 5.3: Life Expectancy at Birth
- All data comes from the Office of National Statistic's life expectancy projections (2014-Based) data
Figure 5.4: Net Migration in Scotland (1951-2015) set
- All data comes from the National Records of Scotland's migration page
Figure 5.5: Net-migration Rates (per 10,000 population)
- Data for Scotland's population and migration estimates comes from NRS and data for the UK comes from the ONS
Population Estimates to 2039
- Data comes from the Scottish National Record's 2014 Population Projection with alternative variables
Figure 5.7: Percentage Change of Population by Age Group, from 2017-2050
- All data comes from the Office of National Statistic's 2014-Based Population Projections