March 21, 2023

Washington, D.C. (May 24, 2016) — AAPI Nexus Journal released Volume 1 of “AAPIs 2040” on Tuesday. The special issue provides population projections of the Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) community and examines where the AAPI community will be by the year 2040 within the social, economic and political context of the United States.

By the year 2040:
• 37 million AAPIs in the United States
• 1 out of 10 Americans will be AAPI
• 1 out of 2 AAPIs will be U.S.-born
• 1 out of 6 Asian Americans (AAs) will be multiracial
• 3 out of 10 AAs in Kindergarten-12th grade will be multiracial
• 9 out of 10 multi-racial AAs will be U.S. born

Population projections included in “AAPIs 2040” provide details on the dramatic demographic transformations not provided elsewhere. To ensure that AAPIs of every race and ethnicity are included in the projections, Paul Ong, professor at the UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs, utilized demographic projection techniques that enhanced the 2014 National Population Projections by the US Census Bureau, rather than using a simple linear extrapolation for all AAPIs, collapsing Asian Americans with others, or reporting for just “Asians Alone.”

According to the projections, AAs will be the fastest growing population, increasing by 74 percent over the next quarter of a century. Pacific Islanders (PIs) will also experience a very high rate of growth, 52 percent, compared to 18 percent for the total population. Immigration has had a dramatic effect on the absolute and relative size of the AAPI population. By the end of the 20th century, immigrants made up a large majority of AAPIs, but by 2040, only half will be immigrants, and half will be U.S.-born. There will also be notable differences by generation and age. By 2040, Asian American elderly will increase 178 percent and Pacific Islander elderly will increase 205 percent, while the number of elderly overall will increase 72 percent. These trends could affect how AAPIs consume products and services, live, work, invest, spend, vote, and play.

The growing numbers of AAPIs have profound political, economic, and social implications. According to guest editor S. Floyd Mori, President & CEO of the Asian and Pacific American Institute for Congressional Studies (APAICS), “With AAPIs representing 1 in 10 Americans by 2040, there is an opportunity for significant AAPI presence and leadership from the C-Suite in the private sector, to all levels of government, from local, state, federal, and even the White House. We need to cultivate a leadership pipeline and resources that will shore up capacity and infrastructure to attain, sustain, and advance what our communities define as the AAPI dream.”

Guest editor Elena Ong said there is evidence of AAPI poverty and income inequality, and so it important to ensure that the nation’s policy makers address the widening divide.

“Success is not just about attainment and buying power, success is also about equity and justice,” Ong said. “It is important to actualize a 2040 vision for the future, and develop a 2040 blueprint to chart the course for the future.”

AAPI Nexus Journal: AAPIs 2040 serves to inform policy makers at the local, state and federal level on the AAPI community and electorate, and help develop and advocate for leadership and a policy trajectory that will serve as a foundation for AAPIs in America’s future. To discuss the significance and policy implications of these numbers, the AAPI Nexus Journal and APAICS invited a number of AAPI thought leaders and organizations to share their perspectives and outlook on what these numbers mean for the AAPIs in the United States and the “AAPI Dream”.

The first collection of essays in Volume 1 focus on the issues of today and tomorrow: health, aging, environmental justice, economic justice, K-12 education, higher education, labor, immigration, and political empowerment. Volume 2, to be released later this year, will focus on Native Hawaiians and Other Pacific Islanders , women, LGBTQI, civil rights, media, business, philanthropy and cultural preservation. Quotes from the authors of Volume 1 essays are attached here.

This special issue has been made possible through the generous support of our sponsors: UCLA Center for Neighborhood Knowledge, APAICS, Eli Lilly and the UCLA Asian American Studies Center. On May 24, 2016, APAICS will host a Capitol Hill briefing on the release of the special issue of AAPI Nexus: AAPIs 2040, Volume 1.

To purchase AAPIs 2040: Volume 1 of the AAPI Nexus Journal, visit

The Asian Pacific American Institute for Congressional Studies (APAICS) is a national non-partisan, nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to promoting Asian Pacific American participation and representation at all levels of the political process, from community service to elected office. APAICS programs focus on developing leadership, building public policy knowledge, and filling the political pipeline for Asian Pacific Americans to pursue public office at the local, state, and federal levels.

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