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Low birth rates, dogs, and the future of Taiwan universities

 
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romanworld



Joined: 27 May 2008
Posts: 388

PostPosted: Sun Dec 21, 2014 2:13 pm    Post subject: Low birth rates, dogs, and the future of Taiwan universities Reply with quote

According to an article in The Atlantic, Taiwanese people are choosing to have pets over children because pets are cheaper to feed and don't need educating . . . at a university anyway. This of course bodes well for pets and for the pet industry, but what about Taiwanese universities that are already having to merge or go bankrupt because of falling student numbers?

Wei-Tse Lee, the 23-year-old editor of a Taipei-based magazine for pet owners called About Animals has this to say:

"50 percent of younger people don’t want to get married, ever. If they are under 30, they want to have a career, to build their own life, and have fun. … But a single woman or man may want a pet because people do need company.” Women who get married often have to live with their in-laws, and some women don’t want to do that, he adds. “Women want women’s rights … and they can do more things than before; they can have a job and become a supervisor.”

With the economy sluggish and wages stagnating, the economics of raising a child in Taiwan are also daunting, Tsay says. “In Taiwanese culture, parents have full responsibility to raise kids to maturity, maybe 30 years old. … Parents think they need to invest a lot in the kids—the best kindergartens, cram schools”—a reference to the private schools students attend after regular school to improve their English and prepare for high-school and college-entrance exams. In 10 years, as a result of Taiwan’s low fertility rate, “one-third of [Taiwanese] universities will be at risk of closing because of lack of students.”


http://www.theatlantic.com/international/archive/2014/08/children-or-chogwu/378981/

I suppose there is one way around the crisis in HE in Taiwan: You could send all the dogs and cats and hamsters and budgerigars to universities across Taiwan when they reach the appropriate age. What they would study once they enter university however is open to debate. I guess they might be interested in Pet Detection, a course divised by Professor Jim Carrey back in 1994 while working in the scientific labs of Morgan Creek Productions in sunny California.


Last edited by romanworld on Fri Apr 10, 2015 11:35 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Lack



Joined: 10 Aug 2011
Posts: 252

PostPosted: Tue Dec 23, 2014 12:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

There is an ongoing massive demographic shift. Pretty much the entirety of the "first world" countries are rapidly aging while marriage and birthrates are down. Some countries, like the U.S., have decided to just bring in immigrants of all sorts. This "solution" is very short sighted and doesn't really fix the issues. Well, if you're a megacorp that wants ever cheaper labor, I guess it is the solution...

Fascinating times we live in.

Perhaps this is a major reason why so many of the Western societies feel dead in spirit. They're done and everyone knows it. It isn't like the world hasn't gone through this kind of thing dozens of times before. Sir John Glubb is a good starting point.
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spiral78



Joined: 05 Apr 2004
Posts: 11518
Location: On a Short Leash

PostPosted: Tue Dec 23, 2014 12:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Interesting. Pet ownership in terms of companion animals (as opposed to back yard dogs and half-wild cats) is also on the rise in developed Western countries.

I'm not personally opposed in any way; I strongly prefer to dine in a restaurant with well-behaved pets as opposed to uncontrolled/uncontrollable human children. Ditto train and airline travel.
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romanworld



Joined: 27 May 2008
Posts: 388

PostPosted: Tue Dec 23, 2014 2:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Taiwanese women are a strange breed. They don't seem to have a lot of interest in the opposite sex. All they seem to be interested in is cultivating their own inner garden. I feel sorry for the men. No wonder there is so much male frustration and anger flying around when they can't find wives. Indeed, some Taiwanese women would prefer to marry themselves than to stoop so low as to get married to a Taiwanese man:

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/asia/taiwan/8080685/Taiwanese-woman-to-marry-herself.html

No wonder Taiwan has one of the lowest birth rates in the world.
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