Wanted and Unwanted Fertility: Does Ethnicity Matter?

Catherine McNamee, University of Texas at Austin

This study investigates wanted and unwanted fertility in Bolivia between Indigenous and non-Indigenous women. Indigenous women showed identical wanted fertility as non-Indigenous women but more unwanted fertility. Differences in the total fertility rate between Indigenous and non-Indigenous women can, therefore, be attributed to unwanted fertility and not fertility preferences. Results showed Indigenous women had higher percentages of unmet need, which can explain the unwanted fertility differentials. Since wanted total fertility rate and unmet need are measured by women's preferences only, couple analysis was conducted to see if male partners were influencing women's reproductive behavior and creating the unwanted differentials. Men could increase unwanted fertility and unmet need if they discouraged their partners who do not want a child from using contraceptives. Logistic regressions however, showed that men's influence explains only a small part of these differences.

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Presented in Poster Session 1