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The Demographic Survey of the Occupied Palestinian Territories

After the Oslo agreement of 1993 the Demographic Survey was the first major survey that the newly established Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics (PCBS) carried out. The project aimed at establishing reliable demographic indicators for the West Bank and Gaza Strip. It had a sample size of 17 000 households and field work was carried out in the summer of 1995.

The survey showed that fertility remains high in both the West Bank and the Gaza Strip, with a total fertility rate if 5.8 in the West Bank, and 7.8 in the Gaza Strip. A characteristic of the demographic regime is extremely short birth intervals. Like in many Arab countries overall age at first marriage has increased over recent decades, but in contrast to most other Arab countries a substantial proportion of women do not marry. Mortality is comparatively low, with a life expectancy of about 73 years for women, and 69 years for men.

Together with results of the 1997 Palestinian Population Census and other data, the demographic survey has also formed the basis for projections of the population size of the Occupied Palestinian Territories until the year 2015.




Jon Pedersen

Liv Jorunn Stokke

Sara Randall

Marwan Khawaja


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