IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/eee/wdevel/v78y2016icp372-385.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

The Missing Link Between Parents’ Preferences and Daughters’ Survival: The Moderator Effect of Societal Discrimination

Author

Listed:
  • Echávarri, Rebeca
  • Husillos, Javier

Abstract

The premature mortality of female children is an alarming demographic outcome in many countries of the world. The most popular explanation for this phenomenon is the prevalence of son preference. However, empirical findings indicate that the assumption of a positive relationship between wanted daughters and female children’s survival is not found in every scenario, and it does not have a clear explanation in the literature. To fill this gap, we present a simple model that provides insights into how the positive marginal effect of wanted daughters on their survival might decrease with higher societal discrimination against young females. The model draws on the emerging literature that examines the erosion of cognitive and noncognitive skills that results from poverty and discrimination. Our theoretical findings are tested for the case of India, using the third round of the National Family Health Survey, with Zero-Inflated Poisson models. Our estimates provide support for the interaction of parents’ preferences and societal discrimination against female children. In particular, we show that the statistical significance of the marginal effect of wanted daughters on their survival disappears in contexts of high societal discrimination against female children. Our study contributes to the literature by questioning the commonly held assumption of additive separability between the effect of family and societal characteristics. One central implication is that the alleviation of poverty alone might fail to automatically reduce sex-based discriminatory practices, and that multidimensional interventions are required that target the individual and society.

Suggested Citation

  • Echávarri, Rebeca & Husillos, Javier, 2016. "The Missing Link Between Parents’ Preferences and Daughters’ Survival: The Moderator Effect of Societal Discrimination," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 78(C), pages 372-385.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:wdevel:v:78:y:2016:i:c:p:372-385
    DOI: 10.1016/j.worlddev.2015.10.037
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0305750X15002594
    Download Restriction: Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to search for a different version of it.

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Rebeca Echávarri & Iñaki Permanyer, 2008. "Ranking profiles of capability sets," Social Choice and Welfare, Springer;The Society for Social Choice and Welfare, vol. 31(3), pages 521-535, October.
    2. Srinivasan, Sharada, 2005. "Daughters or dowries? The changing nature of dowry practices in south India," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 33(4), pages 593-615, April.
    3. Pasquier-Doumer, Laure & Risso Brandon, Fiorella, 2015. "Aspiration Failure: A Poverty Trap for Indigenous Children in Peru?," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 72(C), pages 208-223.
    4. Robert Jensen & Emily Oster, 2009. "The Power of TV: Cable Television and Women's Status in India," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 124(3), pages 1057-1094.
    5. Mangyo, Eiji, 2008. "Who benefits more from higher household consumption? The intra-household allocation of nutrients in China," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 86(2), pages 296-312, June.
    6. Vuong, Quang H, 1989. "Likelihood Ratio Tests for Model Selection and Non-nested Hypotheses," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 57(2), pages 307-333, March.
    7. repec:dau:papers:123456789/12016 is not listed on IDEAS
    8. Nancy Qian, 2008. "Missing Women and the Price of Tea in China: The Effect of Sex-Specific Earnings on Sex Imbalance," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 123(3), pages 1251-1285.
    9. Rohini Pande, 2003. "Selective gender differences in childhood nutrition and immunization in rural India: The role of siblings," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 40(3), pages 395-418, August.
    10. Oster, Emily, 2009. "Does increased access increase equality? Gender and child health investments in India," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 89(1), pages 62-76, May.
    11. Rohlfs, Chris & Reed, Alexander & Yamada, Hiroyuki, 2010. "Causal effects of sex preference on sex-blind and sex-selective child avoidance and substitution across birth years: Evidence from the Japanese year of the fire horse," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 92(1), pages 82-95, May.
    12. Sucharita Sinha Mukherjee, 2013. "Women's Empowerment and Gender Bias in the Birth and Survival of Girls in Urban India," Feminist Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 19(1), pages 1-28, January.
    13. Hu, Albert Guangzhou & Jefferson, Gary H., 2009. "A great wall of patents: What is behind China's recent patent explosion?," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 90(1), pages 57-68, September.
    14. Ming-Jen Lin & Jin-Tan Liu & Nancy Qian, 2014. "More Missing Women, Fewer Dying Girls: The Impact Of Sex-Selective Abortion On Sex At Birth And Relative Female Mortality In Taiwan," Journal of the European Economic Association, European Economic Association, vol. 12(4), pages 899-926, August.
    15. Prabir C. Bhattacharya, 2006. "Economic Development, Gender Inequality, and Demographic Outcomes: Evidence from India," Population and Development Review, The Population Council, Inc., vol. 32(2), pages 263-292.
    16. Rebeca Echávarri & Roberto Ezcurra, 2010. "Education and gender bias in the sex ratio at birth: Evidence from India," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 47(1), pages 249-268, February.
    17. Luke, Nancy & Munshi, Kaivan, 2007. "Social affiliation and the demand for health services: Caste and child health in South India," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 83(2), pages 256-279, July.
    18. Shelley Clark, 2000. "Son preference and sex composition of children: Evidence from india," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 37(1), pages 95-108, February.
    19. A. Dharmalingam & S. Morgan, 2004. "Pervasive Muslim-Hindu fertility differences in India," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 41(3), pages 529-545, August.
    20. Archana Patel & Neetu Badhoniya & Manju Mamtani & Hemant Kulkarni, 2013. "Skewed Sex Ratios in India: “Physician, Heal Thyself”," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 50(3), pages 1129-1134, June.
    21. Dreze, Jean & Sen, Amartya, 2002. "India: Development and Participation," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, edition 2, number 9780199257492.
    22. Maertens, Annemie, 2013. "Social Norms and Aspirations: Age of Marriage and Education in Rural India," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 47(C), pages 1-15.
    23. Dercon, Stefan & Singh, Abhijeet, 2013. "From Nutrition to Aspirations and Self-Efficacy: Gender Bias over Time among Children in Four Countries," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 45(C), pages 31-50.
    24. Karla Hoff & Priyanka Pandey, 2006. "Discrimination, Social Identity, and Durable Inequalities," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 96(2), pages 206-211, May.
    25. Bhalotra, Sonia, 2010. "Fatal fluctuations? Cyclicality in infant mortality in India," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 93(1), pages 7-19, September.
    26. Jean Drèze & Mamta Murthi, 2001. "Fertility, Education, and Development: Evidence from India," Population and Development Review, The Population Council, Inc., vol. 27(1), pages 33-63.
    27. Daniel Kahneman, 2003. "Maps of Bounded Rationality: Psychology for Behavioral Economics," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 93(5), pages 1449-1475, December.
    28. Chaudhuri, Sanjukta, 2013. "A Life Course Model of Human Rights Realization, Female Empowerment, and Gender Inequality in India," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 52(C), pages 55-70.
    29. Branisa, Boris & Klasen, Stephan & Ziegler, Maria, 2013. "Gender Inequality in Social Institutions and Gendered Development Outcomes," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 45(C), pages 252-268.
    30. Rosenzweig, Mark R & Schultz, T Paul, 1982. "Market Opportunities, Genetic Endowments, and Intrafamily Resource Distribution: Child Survival in Rural India," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 72(4), pages 803-815, September.
    31. Nadia Diamond-Smith & David Bishai, 2015. "Evidence of Self-correction of Child Sex Ratios in India: A District-Level Analysis of Child Sex Ratios From 1981 to 2011," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 52(2), pages 641-666, April.
    32. Monica Das Gupta & Woojin Chung & Li Shuzhuo, 2009. "Evidence for an Incipient Decline in Numbers of Missing Girls in China and India," Population and Development Review, The Population Council, Inc., vol. 35(2), pages 401-416.
    33. Mitra, Aparna, 2008. "The status of women among the scheduled tribes in India," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 37(3), pages 1202-1217, June.
    34. Siwan Anderson & Debraj Ray, 2010. "Missing Women: Age and Disease," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 77(4), pages 1262-1300.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. repec:eee:ecolec:v:148:y:2018:i:c:p:77-91 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. repec:eee:wdevel:v:105:y:2018:i:c:p:48-58 is not listed on IDEAS

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:wdevel:v:78:y:2016:i:c:p:372-385. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Dana Niculescu). General contact details of provider: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/worlddev .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.