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Wang, "Procreative intentions in rural China: The relation with sex compositions of existing children, sex preferences, and social-economic status," 1998

USC Dissertation in Demographics.
August 26, 2009

Yuhai Wang, Ph.D.

Abstract (Summary)
Son preference is strongly believed to stand in the way of further fertility decline in rural China. However, previous studies failed to show clear effects of sex preference on parents' intentions to have additional children. Based on a national household economy and fertility survey, this study examines the relationship between sex composition and birth intentions in rural China. In addition to sex compositions, a wide variety of factors are used in the logistic and linear regression models, including demographic and social-economic characteristics, child-raising preferences, parental perceived value of children, and a set of contextual variables. It is found that son preference exists in all type of families. It is also found that wife's age and couple's satisfaction with sex order of existing children have negative effects on birth intentions. I conclude that sex preference is still influencing birth intentions in rural China. The extent of effects varies among families with different number of surviving children, varies among parents of different age, education, and occupation, and varies among regions with different development level.

Advisor: Heer, David M.