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Understanding the Effects of Sibling Composition on Child

  • Gerald Makepeace

    (Cardiff)

  • Sarmistha Pal

    (Cardiff)

This paper argues that spacing between consecutive births is an important aspect of competition among siblings for survival. Since parents simultaneously choose their desired values of birth spacing and the amount of time and other resources invested in children (which in turn affect child mortality), we use a maximum likelihood method to model birth spacing and child mortality as correlated processes while also allowing for family specific unobserved heterogeneity. Our estimates show that the chances of survival in the eastern Indian state of West Bengal increase with an increase in birth interval (prior and/or posterior) and decrease with the birth of a twin.

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Paper provided by EconWPA in its series Labor and Demography with number 0402004.

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Date of creation: 18 Feb 2004
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Handle: RePEc:wpa:wuwpla:0402004
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  1. Maitra, Pushkar, 2004. "Parental bargaining, health inputs and child mortality in India," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 23(2), pages 259-291, March.
  2. William L. Parish & Robert J. Willis, 1993. "Daughters, Education, and Family Budgets Taiwan Experiences," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 28(4), pages 863-898.
  3. Kynch, Jocelyn & Sen, Amartya, 1983. "Indian Women: Well-Being and Survival," Cambridge Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 7(3-4), pages 363-80, September.
  4. Anderson, Kathryn H, 1983. "The Determination of Fertility, Schooling, and Child Survival in Guatemala," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 24(3), pages 567-89, October.
  5. Wolpin, Kenneth I, 1984. "An Estimable Dynamic Stochastic Model of Fertility and Child Mortality," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 92(5), pages 852-74, October.
  6. Panis, Constantijn W. A. & Lillard, Lee A., 1994. "Health inputs and child mortality: Malaysia," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 13(4), pages 455-489.
  7. Zeba A. Sathar, 1992. "Child Survival and Changing Fertility Patterns in Pakistan," The Pakistan Development Review, Pakistan Institute of Development Economics, vol. 31(4), pages 699-713.
  8. Ashish Garg & Jonathan Morduch, 1998. "Sibling rivalry and the gender gap: Evidence from child health outcomes in Ghana," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, vol. 11(4), pages 471-493.
  9. Panis, C.W.A. & Lillard, L.A., 1996. "Child Mortality in Malaysia. Ethnic Differences and the Recent Decline," Papers 96-04, RAND - Reprint Series.
  10. Butcher, Kristin F & Case, Anne, 1994. "The Effect of Sibling Sex Composition on Women's Education and Earnings," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 109(3), pages 531-63, August.
  11. Thomas, D. & Strauss, J., 1990. "Prices, Infrastructure, Household Charasteristics And Child Height," Papers 602, Yale - Economic Growth Center.
  12. Pal, Sarmistha, 1999. "An Analysis of Childhood Malnutrition in Rural India: Role of Gender, Income and Other Household Characteristics," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 27(7), pages 1151-1171, July.
  13. Rosenzweig, Mark R, 1986. "Birth Spacing and Sibling Inequality: Asymmetric Information within the Family," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 27(1), pages 55-76, February.
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