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This article has been verified for the current PC version (3.6) of the game.
Demographics in a multispecies empire

Population, also known as Pop.png pops, is the center of productivity and political action within an empire. They provide resources by working in Pop job.png jobs created by District.png districts and Building buildings, and also produce Unity.png unity if they are part of a specific Menu icon factions.png faction.


Each planet has four variables that determine its demographic direction. A planet can have only one growing pop, one declining pop and one assembling pop at any time.

Pop growthEdit

Growth as a function of planet capacity and population

  Pop growth represents the increase in population from natural reproduction and immigration. A new pop appears after   growth points have been accumulated; the growth required scaling is a game setting. The base growth rate is determined by the number of pops on the planet along a logistic curve determined by the   planet capacity, then pop growth modifiers are applied, and lastly pop growth from immigration/emigration is added/subtracted. The logistic growth ceiling game setting determines the maximum base growth.

Any species existing on the planet or which has immigration access to the planet may be selected to grow there. When choosing a species to grow, planets will generally prioritize species that are under-represented on the planet and have citizenship equal to that of the already existing species. If immigration access is lost to all planets containing the currently selected species, a new species will be selected and all existing growth progress will be erased. Species can be chosen manually for growth if the Population Controls policy is set to Allowed.

  Habitability is an important pop growth modifier. Pops with very low habitability for a planet will only slowly reproduce or migrate from it, or may not at all.

Pop growth stops when a planet is 15% overcrowded and has 5 pops without housing. Pops start to decline when a planet is 25% overcrowded.

  Planet capacity is capped at 500, regardless of free housing or unblocked districts. However, pops over 500 will not stop growing or decline until required housing exceeds available housing by 15% or 25%, as normal.

Base population growth formulas
Condition Formula

Total base pop growth is between 0.3 and   (default 4.5) growth per month. Pop growth modifiers, including habitability penalties, are then applied, and then population growth from immigration/emigration is added/subtracted.


  Migration is calculated by subtracting emigration push from immigration pull, both of which are determined by factors such as   housing,   stability and   unemployment. A planet with more emigration than immigration will have its   growth speed lowered and the amount lowered will be added to potential immigration targets. Planets with higher immigration pull will receive a greater share of this migration, which is converted directly into pop growth. Signing a   migration treaty will allow migration to and from another empire's planets. A newly colonized planet gains +100 immigration pull and divides a total of +50 emigration push between all developed planets, until   15 years have passed or the colony has 10   pops.

Growth weightEdit

The exact mechanics by which a new pop is selected for growing/assembly is not fully known. However a bunch of values can be extracted from the Stellaris/common/defines/00_defines.txt file.

Name Value Description
New_Pop_Species_Randomness 0.5 The higher this is, the more random species selection of new pops will be
New_Pop_Same_Species_Weight 1.0 The higher this is, the more new pops will be weighted by number of same or subspecies pops
New_Pop_Exact_Species_Weight 0.5 The higher this is, the more new pops will be weighted by number of exact same species pops
New_Pop_Slavery_Weight 0.25 The higher this is, the more new pops will tend to be balanced between enslaved and non-enslaved species
New_Pop_Species_Div 0.05 The higher this is, the more planets will tend to grow species that are underrepresented on the planet
New_Pop_Habitability_Threshold 0.75 If habitability is under this, apply exponentially increasing penalties to new pop weight
New_Pop_Homeworld_Mult 2 Pops have increased weight for growing on their homeworld
New_Pop_Growth_Mod_Mult 0.33 How much does species growth mod trait matter for new pop weight
NEW_POP_Immigration_Mod_Mult 1 How much does species immigration growth mod trait matter for new pop weight (when there is immigration)
Pop_Decline_Threshold 3.0 A species will decline when there is another species with a growth priority this many times higher

Pop assemblyEdit

Pop assembly represents a planet's capacity for constructing   Mechanical,   Machine, or biological pops. Pop assembly can be either robotic or biological at a given time; both cannot be produced simultaneously. Once   assembly points are reached, a new pop is created on the planet. Non-sapient robotic pops do not migrate but can create overcrowding and unemployment. The constructed template is the one with the highest number of used trait points, but can always be changed manually; unlike choosing a species to grow, this does not cause a penalty to assembly speed.

  Robotic pop assembly is affected by traits and other modifiers.

  Organic pop assembly is not affected by any traits or modifiers except for the following:

  • +5% per   Medical Worker Job
  • −25% from   Lithoid
  • −75% from   Necrophage
Assembly type   Source DLC Other requirements
  Robotic pop assembly +2   Roboticist jobs   Robotic Workers technology
+1   Replicator jobs     Machine Intelligence authority
  Organic pop assembly +2   Spawning Drone jobs     Hive Mind authority
+2   Reassigner jobs      Permanent Employment civic
+3   Clone Vats buildings     Engineered Evolution ascension perk
+2 to +15   Ancient Clone Vat buildings     Clone Army origin
+0.02   Each pop with the Budding trait  

Pop declineEdit

Pop decline represents the decrease of certain species on the planet due to purging or severe overcrowding. A pop will disappear after 100 decline points have been accumulated. By default, decline rate is −5 decline points per month. Overcrowded planets that have over-represented species will have those species begin to decline in numbers and be replaced by newly growing, under-represented species that have equal citizenship. Purging a particular species will cause that species to decline more rapidly depending on the purge type; the decline factor from purging overrides natural decline factors.


Resettlement is the process of pops moving from one planet to another, more desirable one.

Automatic resettlementEdit

Sapient, unemployed, free pops have a chance (each month) to automatically resettle to another planet with available jobs and housing and suitable habitability. If a   Slave Processing Facility is active on the planet, enslaved pops and robots in servitude are also eligible.

  Migration controls will prevent this (except for sapient robots). Empires that outlaw slavery (and hence the slave processing facility) cannot enable automatic resettlement for robots in servitude.

A   Transit Hub starbase building will increase the monthly chance of a pop automatically resettling.

Forced resettlementEdit

If the empire's   Resettlement policy allows it, forced resettlement will instantly move a pop from one planet to another. This costs a base amount of   energy and   unity determined by the pop's category, which may be reduced by additional modifiers.

Pop category Allowed?   Base cost
  Ruler   Policy 500 50
  Specialist   Policy 250 25
  Worker   Policy 100 10
  •   Complex Drone
  •   Menial Drone
  Always 100 10
  Slave   Policy 50 0
  Bio-Trophy   Always 100 25
  •   Purging
  •   Assimilation
  Always 100 0
  Robotic servitude   Always 100 0
  Subversive   Never n/a
Modifier source   Cost
  Evacuation Protocols edict −50%
  Appropriation tradition −33%
  Operational Proxies tradition −33%
  Corvee System civic +0% No cost
  Subsumed Will civic +0% No cost
  OTA Updates civic +0% No cost
  Starborn trait −25%
  Nomadic trait −25%
  Sedentary trait +25%


Each pop in an empire has a   happiness rating. It ranges from 0% to 100% and has a base level of 50%. Happiness determines approval rating when combined with stratum   political power, as well as the following effects:

  • Each point of happiness above 50 adds +1%   governing ethics attraction to free pops and +2%   Authoritarian ethics attraction to slaves.
  • Each point of happiness below 50 adds −1%   governing ethics attraction to free pops and +10%   Egalitarian ethics attraction to slaves.
  • Each point of happiness above 50 gives each pop −0.02   crime, up to 0 per pop at 100% happiness.
  • Each point of Happiness below 50 gives each pop +0.02   crime, up to +2 per pop at 0% happiness.

Fortunately, there are many ways to improve happiness in an empire. Planetary   edicts, civics,   living standards, permanent modifiers,    planet modifiers, and   ruler traits can positively affect happiness. Events may have an impact on planetary or empire happiness for a limited time as well.

Approval ratingEdit

Pop approval rating is a measure of the population's support towards the empire. It is determined by the average   happiness of each stratum, weighted by   political power. Pops without happiness are treated as having 50% happiness.

Approval rating ranges from 0% to 100% and has a base level of 50%.

  • Each point of approval rating above 50% adds +0.6   stability, up to +30 at 100% approval rating.
  • Each point of approval rating below 50% adds −1   stability, up to −50 at 0% approval rating.


Most organic pops consume   1 food per month, while   Lithoid pops consume   1 minerals per month.   Robots instead consume   1 energy per month. In addition, organic pops that are not part of a   Gestalt Consciousness empire require a certain amount of   consumer goods based on their living standards. Synthetics that are given citizen rights require them as well.

Pops with the   Phototrophic trait replace half their food upkeep with   energy upkeep. The same is true of pops with the   Radiotrophic trait, except the latter require no energy upkeep when living on a   Tomb World.


  Housing represents the living space available for pops to live comfortably. Housing is primarily provided by districts, with   city districts giving more housing than their resource-focused alternatives. Each pop requires 1 unit of housing by default but the housing demands of individual pops can change due to a variety of factors. If the number of pops exceeds the amount of housing it will cause   stability to drop by   and a flat +50 planet emigration push.

As a rule of thumb, each resource district exactly pays for itself in terms of housing, while the pops that work building jobs need city districts (or housing buildings) for their housing, though the capital building provides some buffer before cities are needed. This applies equally to   Ecumenopolises. The   Agrarian Idyll civic gives extra housing to resource districts, allowing the empire to house its pops working building jobs mostly via resource districts. The Trans-Stellar Corporations tradition adds jobs to habitat trade districts, but does not match them with additional housing, making some residential districts necessary.


  Amenities represent the infrastructure and jobs dedicated to fulfilling the needs of the population. Individualist empires obtain amenities from a variety of jobs while   Gestalt Consciousness empires obtain them primarily from   Maintenance Drone jobs. High amenities grant increased   happiness to citizen pops in regular empires and increased stability in   Gestalt Consciousness empires, while insufficient amenities will lower all pops' happiness (or stability, for Gestalts). Amenity value will be rounded to the nearest integer.

The formula for extra amenities contributing   happiness is  . In other words, it scales from +0% with 0 extra amenities, to +20% with twice as many amenities as necessary.

The formula for missing amenities contributing   happiness is  . In other words, it scales from +0% with 0 missing amenities, to −50% when the planet have less than 25% of amenities needed.

Amenities can be affected on an empire-wide basis by the following:

Source Amenities
  Artificial Moral Codes technology +5%
  Executive Retreat branch office building +10%
  Resort World +15%
  Profane Consecrated World +1%
  Respected Consecrated World +2%
  Venerated Consecrated World +3%
  Holy World Consecrated World +4%
  Mega Art Installation (stage I) +5%
  Mega Art Installation (stage II) +10%
  Mega Art Installation (completed) +15%
  Mega Art Installation (perfection) +20%
  Vultaum Star Assembly secrets special project +20%
Source Amenities usage
  One Vision ascension perk −10%
  Vultaum Reality Perforator relic −10%
  Ecological Protection resolution 2 −5%
  Discourage Planetary Growth decision +25%
  Resident citizenship status −25%
  Ascetic −15%


Strata represent pops' social classes. The higher a pop's stratum, the more political power they have and the more   consumer goods they require for upkeep, according to their living standard. It also determines the resettlement cost. Resettlement costs no   unity if the empire has the   Corvée System,   Subsumed Will, or   OTA Updates civic, or if the pop is enslaved or a non-sentient robot.

If a pop takes a job above its stratum, it will be promoted to the higher stratum. If there are no available jobs of equal or higher stratum the pop will become unemployed, slowly demoting in stratum and causing   happiness penalties in most living standards. The   Shared Burdens civic and living standards each reduce demotion time by −45%, the   Kinship tradition reduces it by −75%, and being in default reduces it by −50%.   Slaves demote instantly, regardless of stratum.

Stratum Rank Demotion time Requirements Output modifiers
  Ruler 3   1800    Gestalt Consciousness
  • +40%   Clone Soldier Ascendant trait
  • +10%   Shadow Council civic
  • +5%   Necrophage trait
  Specialist 2   900    Gestalt Consciousness
  • +25%   Clone Soldier Ascendant trait
  • +10%   Meritocracy civic
  • +10%   Fanatic Egalitarian ethic
  • +10%   Academic Privilege living standards
  • +5%   Egalitarian ethic
  • +5%   Necrophage trait
  • +5%   Pursuit of Profit/Creative Collectives tradition
  Worker 1 N/A    Gestalt Consciousness
  • +10%   Fanatic Authoritarian ethic
  • +5%   Authoritarian ethic
  • +5%   Workplace Motivators tradition
  • +10%   Rural World designation
  • +5%   Very Strong species trait
  • +2.5%   Strong species trait
  • +2.5%   Industrial Development resolution 1
  • +5%   Industrial Development resolution 2
  • +7.5%   Industrial Development resolution 3
  • +10%   Industrial Development resolution 4
  • −2.5%   Weak species trait
  • −10%   Necrophage trait
  Complex Drone 0 Instant   Gestalt Consciousness
  • +20%   Manufacturing Focus production policy
  • +5%   Machine Capital designation
  • +5%   Nest Planet designation
  • +5%   Machine Nexus designation
  • +5%   Peak Performance/Neural Signal Boosters tradition
  • +1% per   Bio-trophy "employed" on planet
  • −20%   Extraction Focus production policy
  Menial Drone 0 N/A   Gestalt Consciousness
  • +20%   Extraction Focus production policy
  • +10%   Fringe Planet designation
  • +5%   Machine Capital designation
  • +5%   Hive World designation
  • +5%   Machine World designation
  • +5%   iconify domination tradition
  • −20%   Manufacturing Focus production policy
  Bio-Trophy 0 N/A Organic species in a   Rogue Servitor empire
  • +10%   Send Artifacts to Organic Sanctuaries decision
  Undesirable 0 N/A Undesirables   citizenship
  Assimilation 0 N/A Assimilation   citizenship
  Criminal 1 Instant High   crime
  Deviant Drone 2 Instant High   deviancy in   Hive Mind empires
  Corrupt Drone 2 Instant High   deviancy in   Machine Intelligence empires
  Pre-sapient 0 N/A Pre-sapients
  Precursor 3   5 Fallen Empire
  Primitive 0 N/A Alien pops on The Preserve


Entire species can be enslaved by giving them a certain citizenship, which opens a new tab in the Species Rights menu called Slavery Type that determines what are the effects of slavery.

  Citizenship Slavery requirements Notes
Slaves Species is alien and the empire is    Authoritarian,    Xenophobe, or   Gestalt Consciousness
Servitude Species is robot and the empire has the Servitude Artificial Intelligence policy If   Synthetic Dawn is active, setting this may cause a robot uprising.
Any   Slaver Guilds or   Indentured Assets civics Up to 35% of the pops are enslaved if the world does not have enough pops with the Slaves or Servitude citizenship
Grid amalgamation

Enslaved pops also use only   0.75 amenities and   0.75 housing (instead of 1), which can be further reduced if the   slavery type is Servitude or Livestock. They also have a   resettlement cost of   50 energy. Enslaved pops cannot join factions and have only   25% political power, or 18.7% if a Slave Processing Facility is present on the planet. However, they can still increase   crime if they're too unhappy.

Low   stability is more dangerous when enslaved pops are present on a planet. Normally dangerous events can only occur if it's lower than 25, but if any pop is enslaved it should be kept above 40.

Slaves, workers and specialistsEdit

In addition to the slave resource output modifiers, worker resource output modifiers can also affect slaves in worker jobs. As of 3.0.1, slaves in specialist jobs are affected by specialist output modifiers, but not by slave resource output modifiers, if in Indentured Servitude.

  • Slaves working on   miner jobs can benefit from   worker resource output modifiers, such as   Authoritarian and   Strong.

If a modifier affects the resource output of both workers and slaves, it actually affects slaves in worker jobs twice.

  • The   Extended Shifts edict increases slaves resource output by +10% and workers resource output by +10%, resulting in an total +20% bonus to slaves in worker jobs.

Modifiers that affect workers aside from the resource output ones don't affect slaves.

  • The   Extended Shifts edict decreases slaves' happiness by −10% and worker happiness by −10%. It does not cause the slaves to suffer −20% happiness.

Ethics attraction modifiersEdit

  Ethics divergence is where a pop or group of pops decide to follow a different ethic than the general population. A materialist pop may decide to follow a more spiritual path and a pacifist culture might decide that peace is the path of the weak.

Each pop in an empire will only embrace a single, non-fanatic ethic. At the start of the game, the population will be made of the empire's governing ethics. As population expands and eventually is divided over various planets and sectors, certain segments may decide to adopt values that are different from the core values of the species due to various circumstances in and around the empire.

Each ethic has a certain attraction value attached for all pops, depending on both the empire's situation and their own. Each pop can only switch ethics once per year. The exact values and options that influence the attraction levels of certain ethics can be found at Ethics attraction. The attraction factors of ethics can be amplified by certain circumstances such as policies or traits.

Having a positive ethics attraction effect will let all actions that increase attraction to the government ethics result in even more attraction, and negative amounts will be decreased. With a modifier of 50%, an action that would increase attraction by 2 would instead increase by 3.

Hovering over a pop's ethic will display the attraction towards all ethics.


Sentient humanoid robot

Robots are artificial pops and can be constructed once the required technology becomes available. They have the   Mechanical trait, giving them   +200% habitability on any planet. Robots can be given new traits via robo-modding, and the species template with the highest number of used trait points will be built by default. A different template can be specified for each planet.

The jobs a robot can have are limited by the highest robot technology researched. If an empire researches the   Synthetics technology with AI policy set to Servitude or Citizen Rights, all robots immediately become sapient, gain ethics, are affected by empire and planetary   happiness modifiers and contribute to  crime. With Citizen Rights they also become affected by all   happiness modifiers.

Tech level Maximum stratum Can colonize Sapient
  Robotic Workers   Worker    
  Droids   Specialist (except   Researcher,   Bureaucrat and   Culture Worker) if AI policy is set to Outlawed    
  •   Ruler if AI policy is set to Citizen Rights
  •   Specialist if AI policy is set to Servitude
  •   Specialist (except   Researcher,   Bureaucrat and   Culture Worker) if AI policy is set to Outlawed
  •   if AI policy is set to Outlawed
  •   if AI policy is set to Servitude or Citizen Rights

Robots without Citizen Rights require 50% less   housing and   amenities and do not need   consumer goods. If a planet with sapient robots is captured by an empire that doesn't have the   Synthetics technology, they lose their sapience, and if a planet with non-sapient robots is captured by an empire that has the   Synthetics technology and does not have the Outlawed Artificial Intelligence policy, they are immediately given sapience. Note that non-sapient robots can do all specialist jobs with   Droids tech, but not after researching   Synthetics tech.

  • It's possible to take the   Synthetic Evolution ascension perk and turn all organic pops and leaders into synthetics.
  •   Hive Mind empires cannot build robots and will always purge all robots on their worlds.
  • As long as an empire has the Artificial Intelligence policy set to Servitude there is a risk of them starting an AI rebellion, if either the Synthetics or Sapient Combat Simulations techs have been researched.
  •   Machine Intelligence empires cannot build robots, but they can use them as drones if conquered from a regular empire or bought on the slave market. Robots in a Machine Intelligence empire can work all jobs and are not affected by happiness.


  Purges represent the systematic elimination of specific pops or entire species from an empire and can be done on a per pop or species basis.

Targeted pop purging still requires applying the species-wide   slavery at minimum and it is limited to a basic extermination, although without production penalty.   Gestalt Consciousness empires can purge their pops of any composition freely, with exception of   Bio-Trophies.

Species-wide purging is done by setting the species'   citizenship to   Undesirables.   Gestalt Consciousness pops in empires of different authority are forced to be set as Undesirables, unless they can be assimilated. Therefore, gaining planets from a Gestalt Consciousness empire means that the planet will be lost when it is empty of the conquered pops if there is not at least one non-gestalt pop on it. There are also four special cases:

  • Pre-sapients can only be purged if the   Pre-Sapients policy is not set to Protected and they are automatically purged if it's set to Extermination.
  • Robots are automatically purged if the   Robotic Workers policy is set to Outlawed.
  • Synthetics can only be purged if the   Artificial Intelligence policy is not set to Citizen Rights.
  • Empires with the   Evolutionary Mastery ascension perk can change the citizenship of hive mind pops to   Assimilation, which prevents them from being purged.

Fallen and Awakened Empires can choose not to purge Hive-Minded/Machine pops.

Having any species-wide purge is a negative issue for Xenophile factions, aside from the case of   Gestalt Consciousness pops and outlawed robots.

There are multiple types of purge available, determined by the   Purge Type species rights. See Species rights § Purge type for details.


Human refugees

Pops from other empires may flee to escape purges, slavery, resettlement, crisis bombardment, or as a result of land appropriation. Whether another empire is willing to accept those fleeing depends on its Refugees policy. Refugees will not head for empires where they have the Undesirables citizenship. Accepted refugee pops will get   +20 happiness for 10 years.

Once refugees are generated they will head for any empire that will accept them with their Refugees policy following the following order:

  1.   Habitability at least 70% and   housing at least 1
  2.   Habitability at least 70%
  3.   Habitability at least 50% and   housing at least 1
  4.   Habitability at least 50%
  5.   Habitability at least 20% and   housing at least 1
  6.   Habitability at least 20%
  7.   Housing at least 1
  8. Any other planet

Pops that are    robotic or have the   Hive-Minded,   Nerve Stapled or   Zombie traits cannot become refugees.


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