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Can HIV alter the quantity-quality switch and delay the fertility transition in Sub-Saharan Africa?

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  • Gori, Luca
  • Lupi, Enrico
  • Manfredi, Piero
  • Sodini, Mauro

Abstract

According to the conventional theory of the demographic transition, mortality decline has represented the major trigger for fertility decline and eventually sustained economic development. In Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA), the HIV/AIDS epidemic has had a devastating impact on mortality, by dramatically reversing, in high HIV-prevalence countries, the long-term positive trend in life expectancies. Despite the fact that SSA as a whole is suffering a delayed and slow fertility transition compared to other world’s regions, and despite evidence for halting or even reverting fertility decline in countries with severe HIV epidemics, there seems to be little concern amongst international policy makers, about the ultimate impact that HIV might have on SSA fertility. This work reports model-based evidence of the potential for a HIV-triggered reversal of fertility in high HIV-prevalent SSA countries induced by the fall in education and human capital investments following the drop in life expectancy for young adults. This eventually breaks down the virtuous circle promoting the switch quantity-to-quality of children. This result suggests that the current evidence on fertility halting and declining education in high HIV-prevalent SSA countries should be seriously taken into consideration to prioritise current international interventions.

Suggested Citation

  • Gori, Luca & Lupi, Enrico & Manfredi, Piero & Sodini, Mauro, 2017. "Can HIV alter the quantity-quality switch and delay the fertility transition in Sub-Saharan Africa?," GLO Discussion Paper Series 75, Global Labor Organization (GLO).
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:glodps:75
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Gori, Luca & Manfredi, Piero & Sodini, Mauro, 2018. "A parsimonious model of longevity, fertility, HIV transmission and development," GLO Discussion Paper Series 216, Global Labor Organization (GLO).

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Sub-Saharan Africa; fertility transition; quantity-quality switch; HIV/AIDS epidemics; human capital accumulation; fertility reversal;

    JEL classification:

    • J11 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Demographic Trends, Macroeconomic Effects, and Forecasts
    • J13 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Fertility; Family Planning; Child Care; Children; Youth
    • O1 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development
    • O41 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - One, Two, and Multisector Growth Models

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