The population of the region is 4404.013 million people (according to the census of 2002). More than 2/3 of the population live in cities and towns. The region ranks 5thplace in Russia in terms of the population.

Population density is 42.5% people /1 square kilometer.

As for the national composition, 89.3% of the population are Russians,  2.7% Ukrainians, 2.5% Armenians and 0.6% Byelorussians. Representatives of more than 150 different nationalities live in Rostov region. The mutual respect of the peoples and the traditionally close economic and cultural bonds are the main values highly appreciated and carefully guarded on the Don.

The working-age population is about 70% of the total amount. The educational level of the people in the economically active age is quite high. Thus, for every 1000 people 300 people have secondary specialized education, 400 – secondary general education, 87 – unfinished secondary education, 190 completed higher education degree and 12 - unfinished higher education.

The average annual number of individuals employed in economic activities is 1.75 million people, among them there are 1.2 million people working in private enterprises and organizations.