Variations in attitudinal gender preferences for children across 50 less-developed countries
While a number of studies have examined gender preferences for children by studying behavioral measures, such as skewed sex ratios, sex imbalance in infant mortality, and sibling size/order; attitudinal measures have been analyzed less systematically. Using 50 Demographic and Health Surveys conducted between 2000 and 2008, this paper seeks to advance our understanding of gender preferences in developing countries by examining attitudinal measures cross-nationally. This study’s findings show that, while balance preference is the most common type of preference in the vast majority of countries, countries/regions vary in the prevalence of son and daughter preferences. A preference for sons is not always found; and, indeed, a preference for daughters is shown to prevail in many societies.
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