Japan’s fertility rate has been below replacement since 1975.To offset that decades-long trend, in 2010 a group of students from the University of Tsukuba introduced Yotaro, a robot baby that gives couples a preview of parenthood.
If men and women begin thinking of themselves as potential fathers and mothers, the students theorized, they’ll feel emotionally ready to take a St@bat the real thing.
The 1960s in Romania were a perilous time for couples.
Population growth flatlined, prompting the government to impose a 20% income tax for childless couples and to implement provisions that made divorce nearly impossible.
The idea was: If you weren’t contributing to the communist state by creating future laborers, you had to contribute with dollars instead.
The 1980s weren’t much better, however — women faced forced gynecological exams that were performed by “demographic command units” to ensure pregnancies went to term. When Romanian leadership changed in 1989, the brutal policy finally came crashing down. But at 1.31 children per woman, the fertility rate is still well below replacement.