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Sex selection and fertility in a dynamic model of conception and abortion


  • Jinyoung Kim


This paper investigates the effect of prenatal sex selection on fertility through a stochastic dynamic model with uncertainty in conception as well as in gender, where a woman makes decisions on conception and abortion with or without gender detection tests (i.e. sex-selective or sex-unselective abortion). The paper shows that, when the cost of gender detection test falls, the sex ratio at birth rises due to more selective abortions, but fertility can rise or fall with rising sex ratio. Fertility may rise (fall) if there are more (less) women giving up unselective abortions for selective abortions than women giving up childbirths without test for selective abortions. Similarly the paper shows that the sex ratio can rise or fall, when fertility decreases as the cost of children increases. I test these propositions as well as their implications against micro survey data on the pregnancy history of Korean women. Copyright Springer-Verlag 2005

Suggested Citation

  • Jinyoung Kim, 2005. "Sex selection and fertility in a dynamic model of conception and abortion," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 18(1), pages 41-67, January.
  • Handle: RePEc:spr:jopoec:v:18:y:2005:i:1:p:41-67
    DOI: 10.1007/s00148-004-0195-0

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    Cited by:

    1. Kyeongkuk Kim & Sang-Hyop Lee & Timothy J. Halliday, 2020. "Intra-Familial Transfers, Son Preference, and Retirement Behavior in South Korea," Working Papers 202013, University of Hawaii at Manoa, Department of Economics.
    2. Leonid V. Azarnert, 2009. "Abortion And Human Capital Accumulation: A Contribution To The Understanding Of The Gender Gap In Education," Scottish Journal of Political Economy, Scottish Economic Society, vol. 56(5), pages 559-579, November.
    3. Avraham Ebenstein, 2011. "Estimating a Dynamic Model of Sex Selection in China," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 48(2), pages 783-811, May.
    4. Kim, Kyeongkuk & Lee, Sang-Hyop & Halliday, Timothy J., 2018. "The Betrayed Generation? Intra-Household Transfers and Retirement Behavior in South Korea," IZA Discussion Papers 11846, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    5. Lena Edlund & Chulhee Lee, 2013. "Son Preference, Sex Selection and Economic Development: The Case of South Korea," NBER Working Papers 18679, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    6. Alexander Stimpfle & David Stadelmann, 2016. "Does Central Europe Import the Missing Women Phenomenon?," CREMA Working Paper Series 2016-04, Center for Research in Economics, Management and the Arts (CREMA).
    7. Gahramanov Emin & Gaibulloev Khusrav & Younas Javed, 2019. "Parental Transfers, Intra-household Bargaining and Fertility Decision," The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy, De Gruyter, vol. 19(1), pages 1-17, January.
    8. Sam Hyun Yoo & Sarah R. Hayford & Victor Agadjanian, 2017. "Old Habits Die Hard? Lingering Son Preference in an Era of Normalizing Sex Ratios at Birth in South Korea," Population Research and Policy Review, Springer;Southern Demographic Association (SDA), vol. 36(1), pages 25-54, February.
    9. Xu, Bing & Pak, Maxwell, 2015. "Gender ratio under China's two-child policy," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 119(C), pages 289-307.
    10. Gahramanov, Emin & Gaibulloev, Khusrav & Younas, Javed, 2017. "Parental Transfers and Fertility: Does the Recipient's Gender Matter?," MPRA Paper 79531, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    11. Marek Loužek, 2010. "Mikroekonomické základy reprodukčního rozhodování [Microeconomic Foundations of Reproductive Behaviour]," Politická ekonomie, Prague University of Economics and Business, vol. 2010(3), pages 374-391.
    12. Rebeca A. Echávarri, 2006. "Gender Bias in Sex Ratio at Birth: The Case of India," Documentos de Trabajo - Lan Gaiak Departamento de Economía - Universidad Pública de Navarra 0605, Departamento de Economía - Universidad Pública de Navarra.
    13. Kigon Nam, 2010. "The Effect of Having More Children on Women's Labour Force Participation in Korea: An Analysis Using Instrument Variables," LABOUR, CEIS, vol. 24(3), pages 333-356, September.
    14. Alcalde-Unzu, Jorge & Echavarri, Rebeca & Husillos, Javier, 2020. "An evolutionary model of prenatal and postnatal discrimination against females," Mathematical Social Sciences, Elsevier, vol. 104(C), pages 1-14.
    15. S Anukriti, 2018. "Financial Incentives and the Fertility-Sex Ratio Trade-Off," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 10(2), pages 27-57, April.

    More about this item


    J13; J16; D10; Gender control; sex selection; fertility; selective and unselective abortion;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • J13 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Fertility; Family Planning; Child Care; Children; Youth
    • J16 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Gender; Non-labor Discrimination
    • D10 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - General


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