District-level population projection for Kajaani

The demographic structure of the city of Kajaani has changed dramatically in the 2020s. The number of births in the city has fallen sharply reflecting the country-wide decline in fertility rates. At the same time, the rapid increase in immigration at the national level has also significantly strengthened the city’s demographic development. From the perspective of future planning, the need to model the impact of the latest demographic changes on Kajaani’s long-term development as well as on the development within the city led MDI to conduct a district-level population projection for Kajaani.

The projection was based on an extensive analysis of past (demographic) developments. This analysis dissected the structure of the city’s demographic development and the changes that have taken place in it charting the development of the different districts and rural areas of the city. In particular, the structure of migration in the city was examined at both city and district level. Based on past demographic developments, the reasons behind changes in birth rates, changes in the structure and volume of migration and the challenges of internal migration within the city were identified.

Based on the analysis of past developments, assumptions were made for two future development scenarios, modelling the future development of the city in both a stronger and a more pessimistic future context. Population projections were also made at the district-level. The projection was used to study the development and distribution of different age groups within the city, focusing in particular on the development of the school age groups. The final result was a modelling of the structure and possible future paths of demographic development in Kajaani, which was then used to draw conclusions in respect of possible alternative development paths and the impact on the number of schoolchildren in addition to assessing the potential for development in different areas. The results of the projection were reported in a comprehensive Powerpoint report and all data generated from the projection were provided to the city for further use. The main findings of the projection were presented to the City Council in a seminar in Kajaani.