How do you get Belarus and the Baltic states to have a much larger population right now?

Futurist

Ad Honoris
May 2014
22,750
SoCal
Prevent ww1-interperiod-ww2 and they would have more population. A lot of depopulation comes from war especially when it’s fought along this territories
Please see my original post here. I explicitly mentioned the World Wars and Communism here and the need to prevent both of these things. This isn't going to be enough, though; after all, I want at least a threefold increase in population in comparison to real life.
 
Apr 2017
1,678
U.S.A.
The only way for the population to increase drastically in this scenario is for Russians to move their in droves. Short of some extremely valuable resource or a disaster in European Russia to compel the people to move, I don't see a realistic reason for them to do so.
 
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Futurist

Ad Honoris
May 2014
22,750
SoCal
The only way for the population to increase drastically in this scenario is for Russians to move their in droves. Short of some extremely valuable resource or a disaster in European Russia to compel the people to move, I don't see a realistic reason for them to do so.
Even global warming won't work for this, correct?

Also, wasn't the quality of life in Latvia and Estonia better than the quality of life in Russian Russia? I certainly know that Latvia and Estonia were more literate in 1897 than Russian Russia was:

 

Futurist

Ad Honoris
May 2014
22,750
SoCal
As for @Kotromanic's comment here, please keep in mind that I did consider Germany and its potential pool of settlers here, but Germany has much less people than Russia has and also the quality of life in Germany would probably be better than in either the Baltic states or Belarus.
 
Apr 2018
979
Upland, Sweden
Suppose that the Central Powers win World War 1, with a caveat: the slavic parts of Austria-Hungary secede, and violently throw out their Germans. Well, maybe a few could move to the Baltic states? The local German aristocracy certainly had an interest in Germanizing the area. In this scenario we also avoid WW2. Ergo, current population is higher.

Here is a thought: the Soviet Union doesn't collapse the same way, because it is instead economically liberalized from Kruschev onwards. From the late 80s early 70s onwards the Baltic states are made into a special economic zone (like that place in Southern China I forget the name of). This causes all sorts of people from across the Soviet Empire to move there, in search of a better life.

Another idea. Suppose the collapse of the Soviet Union led to massive political problems inside Russia (suppose the coup against Gorbachev would have succeeded. Suppose that somewhere in the tumult of it all a mad Russian general desperate for glory and feeling paranoid detonates a nuclear device or two. This creates a refugee crisis towards Belarus and the Baltic states from Russia.

Suppose that John McCain is elected presented in 2008 and decide to take the whole Russia/ Georgia situation seriously. For various completely unrealistic reasons all of Europe agrees with him and you trigger a refugee crisis from Eastern Europe (is this so inconcievable? Poland has taken in lots of Ukrainains since the whole deal in Eastern Ukraine began).

Finally, suppose I break up with my girlfriend and apply for Estonian citizenship... ;)
 
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Jun 2017
2,988
Connecticut
In a thread elsewhere on this forum, I asked why exactly Belarus and the Baltic states have such few people. I was told that the main reason is that the climate of these territories simply isn't very appealing to a lot of people due to it being too cold. In turn, this raises the question:

Is there any realistic way for Belarus and the Baltic states to have a much larger population (as in, at least three times larger) right now than they have in real life? Specifically, I want a "point of departure"(from real life) of 1850 or later for this scenario of mine.

I know that getting rid of the World Wars, Holocaust, and Communism would be a great way of significantly boosting the population of these territories, but I simply don't think that it's going to be enough considering that I want a population at least three times larger for these territories in comparison to the population that they have in real life. In turn, this raises the question of how exactly one should aim to realistically accomplish this.

Any thoughts on this?
No tbh. If the population couldn't experience a major boost during Swedish hegemony there was never any hope for them. Remember unlike the French the Swedes mainly freed themselves of their demographic war problem before industrialization. Wouldn't change much. Sweden'(the best contender of the relevant countries) population has been going up steadily at a slow pace throughout history. Problem was it started off so tiny so the country's population wasn't boosted by the same factors other Euro nations were. For example in 1600 Hungary the second smallest European state had slightly more than Sweden's population and ended up in the same place despite suffering much more from war. The standings since then sans outside factors like war have largely remained the same, the issue with Scandanavia has been the starting point and that was in turn caused by the location. They experienced the same population boom Europe did during the industrial age, just besides Sweden the rest of the countries didn't even have a million people.

per wikipedia

1000-Denmark 500k Sweden 400k Norway 200k
1500-Denmark 600k Sweden 550k Finland 300k Norway 240k
1600-Sweden 900k Denmark 570k Norway 400k Finland 300k
1700-Sweden 1.485m, Denmark 745k Norway 540k Finland 500k
1800-Sweden 2.437m, Denmark 929k, Norway 883k
1900-Sweden 2.8m Finland 2.7 m Denmark 2.4m Norway 2.2m
Present-Sweden 10.2m Denmark 5.8m Finland 5.5 m Norway 5.3m

This is more or less in line with what could be expected given their small peers populations in 1500. If anything the Scandavian's grew more. England is a severe outlier.
1500-Portugal 3 million, England 2.1 million, Low Countries 950k Switzerland 745 k Scotland 250k, Ireland 250k
Present-England 55.6 million Combined Netherlands and Belgium 28 million, Switzerland 8.5 Portugal 6 million, Scotland 5.4 million, Ireland 4.9 million.

Per Belarus, Estonia, Latvia that was the most isolated location in all of Europe and I do not think the scenario exists where there population rises considerably faster either.
 
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Futurist

Ad Honoris
May 2014
22,750
SoCal
Suppose that the Central Powers win World War 1, with a caveat: the slavic parts of Austria-Hungary secede, and violently throw out their Germans. Well, maybe a few could move to the Baltic states? The local German aristocracy certainly had an interest in Germanizing the area. In this scenario we also avoid WW2. Ergo, current population is higher.
I honestly don't see Germany being willing to allow A-H Slavs to secede after a CP WWI victory. However, what is possible is that rabid anti-German sentiments develop in Russia as a result of WWI and that Russian Germans therefore feel less safe and less welcome in their homeland. This could perhaps motivate a significant number of Russian Germans to move to Latvia and Estonia--though the question would be whether the farmland in Latvia and Estonia is of as high of a quality as the farmland in their past places of residence in Russia is. (I've previously heard and/or read that most Russian Germans were farmers.)

Here is a thought: the Soviet Union doesn't collapse the same way, because it is instead economically liberalized from Kruschev onwards. From the late 80s early 70s onwards the Baltic states are made into a special economic zone (like that place in Southern China I forget the name of). This causes all sorts of people from across the Soviet Empire to move there, in search of a better life.
That's actually not completely implausible. Shenzhen experienced a massive population explosion after it became China's first SEZ and thus it's not completely out of the question that something similar could have happened to the Baltic states in this scenario.

Another idea. Suppose the collapse of the Soviet Union led to massive political problems inside Russia (suppose the coup against Gorbachev would have succeeded. Suppose that somewhere in the tumult of it all a mad Russian general desperate for glory and feeling paranoid detonates a nuclear device or two. This creates a refugee crisis towards Belarus and the Baltic states from Russia.
That's also possible--albeit extremely unpleasant.

Suppose that John McCain is elected presented in 2008 and decide to take the whole Russia/ Georgia situation seriously. For various completely unrealistic reasons all of Europe agrees with him and you trigger a refugee crisis from Eastern Europe (is this so inconcievable? Poland has taken in lots of Ukrainains since the whole deal in Eastern Ukraine began).
The problem is that since the Baltic countries are so close to the Russian border, people are likely to flee from there rather than to there in the event of any NATO-Russia war.

Finally, suppose I break up with my girlfriend and apply for Estonian citizenship... ;)
Are you going to reproduce a lot afterwards? ;)
 
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Apr 2018
979
Upland, Sweden
I honestly don't see Germany being willing to allow A-H Slavs to secede after a CP WWI victory. However, what is possible is that rabid anti-German sentiments develop in Russia as a result of WWI and that Russian Germans therefore feel less safe and less welcome in their homeland. This could perhaps motivate a significant number of Russian Germans to move to Latvia and Estonia--though the question would be whether the farmland in Latvia and Estonia is of as high of a quality as the farmland in their past places of residence in Russia is. (I've previously heard and/or read that most Russian Germans were farmers.)
You're right, it felt far fetched when I wrote it.

It is pretty high quality. There is lots of forest as well though, but the parts of the country that is not forest if pretty great farmland. Still part of the Northeast European plain. I'd think them becoming farmers in unlikely though, there's not much room and I think given the technological changes of them time most of them moving into the cities makes more sense.


That's actually not completely implausible. Shenzhen experienced a massive population explosion after it became China's first SEZ and thus it's not completely out of the question that something similar could have happened to the Baltic states in this scenario.
Right, Shenzhen was it! And indeed!




That's also possible--albeit extremely unpleasant.
Yup. I sometimes feel a bit lucky when I think about all the obvious horrible possibilities that didn't happen in history.



The problem is that since the Baltic countries are so close to the Russian border, people are likely to flee from there rather than to there in the event of any NATO-Russia war.
Well, I didn't really think there was going to be a war - more like very severe sanctions at a point in time when Russia's economy was even more weak than in 2014.




Are you going to reproduce a lot afterwards? ;)
Possibly. :p
 

Futurist

Ad Honoris
May 2014
22,750
SoCal
You're right, it felt far fetched when I wrote it.

It is pretty high quality. There is lots of forest as well though, but the parts of the country that is not forest if pretty great farmland.
This map shows poor soil quality in the Baltics, though:

https://www.reddit.com/r/europe/comments/2thv3i
Still part of the Northeast European plain. I'd think them becoming farmers in unlikely though, there's not much room and I think given the technological changes of them time most of them moving into the cities makes more sense.
Don't the Baltics still have a lot of space, though?

Also, Yes, most of them probably would eventually move into cities. However, would they actually be inclined to move to Baltic cities as opposed to moving to some other cities in Germany? I mean, Germany experienced an Ostflucht in the decades before WWI and I don't see why exactly the Baltic states would have been immune to this if Germany would have given the people there the right to move to Germany.

Right, Shenzhen was it! And indeed!
Yep. However, Shenzhen is a part of a giant metropolitan area whereas the Baltic states are not:

Mapping Population Density Across the Globe

Play around with that map above. You'll see that the Baltic states have a much lower population density than the part of China that Shenzhen is located in.

Yup. I sometimes feel a bit lucky when I think about all the obvious horrible possibilities that didn't happen in history.
Yeah. IMHO, the collapse of the Soviet Union was one of the good things about the 20th century. It helped further fulfill the vision and principle of national self-determination. :)

Of course, real life was already bad enough as it is. WWI, WWII, the Holocaust, the horrors of Communism, et cetera. :(

Well, I didn't really think there was going to be a war - more like very severe sanctions at a point in time when Russia's economy was even more weak than in 2014.
Even if so, though, I don't think that Russians are going to be eager to flee en masse. Russia was a hellhole in the 1990s and most of the Russians who wanted to leave (including my own parents, BTW) probably already did so back then.

Possibly. :p
Are you attractive? ;)
 
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