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Fertility in Developing Countries

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  • T. Paul Schultz

    () (Yale University)

Abstract

The associations between fertility and outcomes in the family and society have been treated as causal, but this is inaccurate if fertility is a choice coordinated by families with other life-cycle decisions, including labour supply of mothers and children, child human capital, and savings. Estimating how exogenous changes in fertility that are uncorrelated with preferences or constraints affect others depends on our specifying a valid instrumental variable for fertility. Twins have served as such an instrument and confirm that the cross-effects of fertility estimated on the basis of this instrument are smaller in absolute value than their associations.

Suggested Citation

  • T. Paul Schultz, 2007. "Fertility in Developing Countries," Working Papers 953, Economic Growth Center, Yale University.
  • Handle: RePEc:egc:wpaper:953
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    File URL: http://www.econ.yale.edu/growth_pdf/cdp953.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Kenneth I. Wolpin & Mark R. Rosenzweig, 2000. "Natural "Natural Experiments" in Economics," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 38(4), pages 827-874, December.
    2. Mark R. Rosenzweig & Junsen Zhang, 2009. "Do Population Control Policies Induce More Human Capital Investment? Twins, Birth Weight and China's "One-Child" Policy," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 76(3), pages 1149-1174.
    3. Schultz, T. Paul, 2008. "Population Policies, Fertility, Women's Human Capital, and Child Quality," Handbook of Development Economics, Elsevier.
    4. Willis, Robert J, 1973. "A New Approach to the Economic Theory of Fertility Behavior," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 81(2), pages 14-64, Part II, .
    5. Schultz, T Paul, 1985. "Changing World Prices, Women's Wages, and the Fertility Transition: Sweden, 1860-1910," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 93(6), pages 1126-1154, December.
    6. Rosenzweig, Mark R & Wolpin, Kenneth I, 1980. "Testing the Quantity-Quality Fertility Model: The Use of Twins as a Natural Experiment," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 48(1), pages 227-240, January.
    7. Eckstein, Zvi & Schultz, T. Paul & Wolpin, Kenneth I., 1984. "Short-run fluctuations in fertility and mortality in pre-industrial Sweden," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 26(3), pages 295-317, December.
    8. Mark Pin & Shahidur Khandker & Signe-Mary Mckernan & M. Latif, 1999. "Credit programs for the poor and reproductive behavior in low-income countries: Are the reported causal relationships the result of heterogeneity bias?," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 36(1), pages 1-21, February.
    9. Gary S. Becker & H. Gregg Lewis, 1974. "Interaction between Quantity and Quality of Children," NBER Chapters,in: Economics of the Family: Marriage, Children, and Human Capital, pages 81-90 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    10. T. Paul Schultz, 1990. "Testing the Neoclassical Model of Family Labor Supply and Fertility," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 25(4), pages 599-634.
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    Cited by:

    1. Ana Dammert, 2010. "Siblings, child labor, and schooling in Nicaragua and Guatemala," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 23(1), pages 199-224, January.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Fertility Determination; Malthus; Household Demands; Fertility Effects;

    JEL classification:

    • D13 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Household Production and Intrahouse Allocation
    • J13 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Fertility; Family Planning; Child Care; Children; Youth
    • N30 - Economic History - - Labor and Consumers, Demography, Education, Health, Welfare, Income, Wealth, Religion, and Philanthropy - - - General, International, or Comparative
    • O15 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Economic Development: Human Resources; Human Development; Income Distribution; Migration

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