Demographic change and its impacts on settlement structures currently represent a major topic of public concern and scientific debate not only in Germany. Yet, it is not a new one. Already in the 1970s one could read about “dying” villages in the areas close to the (then) Inner German Border. These settlements exist still today. But, once again, villages in peripheral regions across the country are subject to widespread assumptions about left-behind residents and the limited futures of the settlements in which they live. Many local and regional practitioners order demographic prognoses (or carry them out themselves) in order to become more certain about the future of their town or city. Local demographic change is, as a rule, understood as a univocal, unambiguous process that will determine the world in which we will live. In the case study presentation I would like to reflect upon science-policy interactions on issues of demographic change and, particularly, on the role that scientists should, in my mind, play with regard to per se uncertain futures. The presentation is based upon on different research studies in the past years that were and are dealing with the local impacts of population decline and demographic ageing in Germany.