IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Login to save this paper or follow this series

Birth Spacing, Fertility and Neonatal Mortality in India: Dynamics, Frailty and Fecundity

  • Bhalotra, Sonia R.


    (University of Essex)

  • van Soest, Arthur


    (Tilburg University)

A dynamic panel data model of neonatal mortality and birth spacing is analyzed, accounting for causal effects of birth spacing on subsequent mortality and of mortality on the length of the next birth interval, while controlling for unobserved heterogeneity in mortality (frailty) and birth spacing (fecundity). The model is estimated using micro data on almost 30,000 children of 7,300 Indian mothers, for whom a complete retrospective record of fertility and child mortality is available. Information on sterilization is used to identify an equation for completion of family formation that is needed to account for right-censoring in the data. We find clear evidence of frailty, fecundity, and causal effects of birth spacing on mortality and vice versa, but find that birth interval effects can explain only a limited share of the correlation between neonatal mortality of successive children in a family. We also predict the impact of mortality on total fertility. Model simulations suggest that, for every neonatal death, an additional 0.37 children are born, of whom 0.3 survive.

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL:
Download Restriction: no

Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 2163.

in new window

Length: 54 pages
Date of creation: Jun 2006
Date of revision:
Publication status: published in: Journal of Econometrics, 2008, 143 (2), 274-290
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp2163
Contact details of provider: Postal: IZA, P.O. Box 7240, D-53072 Bonn, Germany
Phone: +49 228 3894 223
Fax: +49 228 3894 180
Web page:

Order Information: Postal: IZA, Margard Ody, P.O. Box 7240, D-53072 Bonn, Germany

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

as in new window
  1. Alessie, R.J.M. & Hochgürtel, S. & van Soest, A.H.O., 2004. "Ownership of stocks and mutual funds : A panel data analysis," Other publications TiSEM 471d7c77-905c-4d47-84b9-d, Tilburg University, School of Economics and Management.
  2. Vassilis A. Hajivassiliou and Paul A. Ruud., 1993. "Classical Estimation Methods for LDV Models Using Simulation," Economics Working Papers 93-219, University of California at Berkeley.
  3. Gary Solon & Mary Corcoran & GRoger Gordon & Deborah Laren, 1991. "A Longitudinal Analysis of Sibling Correlations in Economic Status," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 26(3), pages 509-534.
  4. Wiji Arulampalam & Sonia Bhalotra, 2003. "Sibling Death Clustering in India: Genuine Scarring vs Unobserved Heterogeneity," Bristol Economics Discussion Papers 03/552, Department of Economics, University of Bristol, UK.
  5. Angrist, Joshua D & Evans, William N, 1998. "Children and Their Parents' Labor Supply: Evidence from Exogenous Variation in Family Size," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 88(3), pages 450-77, June.
  6. Kenneth Train, 2003. "Discrete Choice Methods with Simulation," Online economics textbooks, SUNY-Oswego, Department of Economics, number emetr2.
  7. Rosenzweig, Mark R. & Wolpin, Kenneth I., 1984. "Heterogeneity, Intrafamily Distribution and Child Health," Bulletins 8429, University of Minnesota, Economic Development Center.
  8. Elizabeth Zenger, 1993. "Siblings’ neonatal mortality risks and birth spacing in Bangladesh," Demography, Springer, vol. 30(3), pages 477-488, August.
  9. James J. Heckman & V. Joseph Hotz & James R. Walker, . "New Evidence on the Timing and Spacing of Births," University of Chicago - Population Research Center 85-1, Chicago - Population Research Center.
  10. David M. Cutler & Angus S. Deaton & Adriana Lleras-Muney, 2006. "The Determinants of Mortality," Working Papers id:359, eSocialSciences.
  11. DaVanzo, J. & Rahman, M., 1993. "Gender Preference and Birthspacing in Matlab, Bangladesh," Papers 93-04, RAND - Labor and Population Program.
  12. Alessandro Cigno, 1998. "Fertility decisions when infant survival is endogenous," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, vol. 11(1), pages 21-28.
  13. Arulampalam, Wiji & Bhalotra, Sonia R., 2006. "Sibling Death Clustering in India: State Dependence vs. Unobserved Heterogeneity," IZA Discussion Papers 2251, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  14. Card, David, 1999. "The causal effect of education on earnings," Handbook of Labor Economics, in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 30, pages 1801-1863 Elsevier.
  15. DaVanzo, J. & Pebley, A.R., 1993. "Maternal Depletion and Child Survival in Guatemala and Malaysia," Papers 93-18, RAND - Labor and Population Program.
  16. Bhargava, Alok, 2003. "Family planning, gender differences and infant mortality: evidence from Uttar Pradesh, India," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 112(1), pages 225-240, January.
  17. Schultz, T. Paul, 1993. "Demand for children in low income countries," Handbook of Population and Family Economics, in: M. R. Rosenzweig & Stark, O. (ed.), Handbook of Population and Family Economics, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 8, pages 349-430 Elsevier.
  18. Kalemli-Ozcan, Sebnem, 2002. " Does the Mortality Decline Promote Economic Growth?," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 7(4), pages 411-39, December.
  19. Robert Moffitt, 2003. "Causal Analysis in Population Research: An Economist's Perspective," Population and Development Review, The Population Council, Inc., vol. 29(3), pages 448-458.
  20. Rosenzweig, Mark R & Schultz, T Paul, 1983. "Consumer Demand and Household Production: The Relationship between Fertility and Child Mortality," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 73(2), pages 38-42, May.
  21. Pritchett, Lant H. & DEC, 1994. "Desired fertility and the impact of population policies," Policy Research Working Paper Series 1273, The World Bank.
  22. Pushkar Maitra & Sarmistha Pal, 2005. "Birth Spacing and Child Survival: Comparative Evidence from India and Pakistan," Labor and Demography 0509010, EconWPA.
  23. Ben-Porath, Yoram, 1976. "Fertility Response to Child Mortality: Micro Data from Israel," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 84(4), pages S163-78, August.
  24. Siân Curtis & Ian Diamond & John McDonald, 1993. "Birth interval and family effects on postneonatal mortality in Brazil," Demography, Springer, vol. 30(1), pages 33-43, February.
  25. Akerlof, George A, 1998. "Men without Children," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 108(447), pages 287-309, March.
  26. repec:oup:restud:v:60:y:1993:i:3:p:531-42 is not listed on IDEAS
  27. David N. Weil & Oded Galor, 2000. "Population, Technology, and Growth: From Malthusian Stagnation to the Demographic Transition and Beyond," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(4), pages 806-828, September.
  28. Bolstad W. M & Manda S. O, 2001. "Investigating Child Mortality in Malawi Using Family and Community Random Effects: A Bayesian Analysis," Journal of the American Statistical Association, American Statistical Association, vol. 96, pages 12-19, March.
  29. Rosenzweig, Mark R & Schultz, T Paul, 1983. "Estimating a Household Production Function: Heterogeneity, the Demand for Health Inputs, and Their Effects on Birth Weight," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 91(5), pages 723-46, October.
  30. Whitworth, Alison & Stephenson, Rob, 2002. "Birth spacing, sibling rivalry and child mortality in India," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 55(12), pages 2107-2119, December.
  31. Rosenzweig, Mark R & Schultz, T Paul, 1989. "Schooling, Information and Nonmarket Productivity: Contraceptive Use and Its Effectiveness," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 30(2), pages 457-77, May.
  32. Arulampalam, Wiji & Bhalotra, Sonia R., 2006. "Persistence in Infant Mortality: Evidence for the Indian States," IZA Discussion Papers 2488, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  33. Dean R. Hyslop, 1999. "State Dependence, Serial Correlation and Heterogeneity in Intertemporal Labor Force Participation of Married Women," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 67(6), pages 1255-1294, November.
  34. Randall Olsen, 1980. "Estimating the effect of child mortality on the number of births," Demography, Springer, vol. 17(4), pages 429-443, November.
  35. Wooldridge, Jeffrey M., 2000. "A framework for estimating dynamic, unobserved effects panel data models with possible feedback to future explanatory variables," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 68(3), pages 245-250, September.
  36. Heckman, James J, 1974. "Shadow Prices, Market Wages, and Labor Supply," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 42(4), pages 679-94, July.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp2163. 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: (Mark Fallak)

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 references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link 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 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.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.