Volume 3 - Article 7

Empirical Assessments of Social Networks, Fertility and Family Planning Programs: Nonlinearities and their Implications

By Hans-Peter Kohler, PhD, Jere R. Behrman, Susan Watkins

Print this page  Send this article to a friend  Twitter

 

 
Date received:24 Jul 2000
Date published:20 Sep 2000
Word count:9500
Keywords:family planning programs, fertility, non-linear models, social interactions
DOI:10.4054/DemRes.2000.3.7
 

Abstract

Empirical studies of the diffusion of modern methods of family planning have increasing incorporated social interaction within nonlinear models such as logits. But they have not considered the full implications of these nonlinear specifications. This paper considers the implications of using nonlinear models in empirical analyses of the impact of family programs, modulated by social interaction, on reproductive behavior. Three implications of nonlinear models, in comparison with linear models, are developed.
(1) With nonlinear models, there may be both low and high contraceptive-use equilibria (i.e., the ultimate level of use of modern family planning that a population can be expected to reach after the effects of a sustained change in a family planning program have worked through the population) rather than just one equilibrium as in linear models. If there are multiple equilibria, then one striking and important result is that a transitory large program effort
may move a community from sustained low- to high-level contraceptive use.
(2) With nonlinear models the extent to which a social interaction multiplies program efforts depends on whether the community is at a low or high level of contraceptive use rather than being independent of the level of contraceptive use as in linear models.
(3) With nonlinear models, intensified social interaction can retard or enhance the diffusion of family planning, in contrast to only enhancing diffusion as within linear models. To clarify these implications, for comparison a simple and more transparent linear model is also discussed. Illustrative estimates are presented of simple linear and nonlinear models for rural Kenya that demonstrate that some of these effects may be considerable.

Author's Affiliation

Hans-Peter Kohler, PhD - University of Pennsylvania, United States of America [Email]
Jere R. Behrman - University of Pennsylvania, United States of America [Email]
Susan Watkins - University of Pennsylvania, United States of America [Email]

Other articles by the same author/authors in Demographic Research

» Intergenerational Transfers in the Era of HIV/AIDS: Evidence from Rural Malawi
Volume 27 - Article 27

» Out of Sync? Demographic and other social science research on health conditions in developing countries
Volume 24 - Article 2

» Asking God about the date you will die: HIV testing as a zone of uncertainty in rural Malawi
Volume 23 - Article 32

» The Likoma Network Study: Context, data collection and initial results
Volume 21 - Article 15

» Subjective expectations in the context of HIV/AIDS in Malawi
Volume 20 - Article 31

» The Malawi Diffusion and Ideational Change Project 2004-06: Data collection, data quality, and analysis of attrition
Volume 20 - Article 21

» Overestimating HIV infection: The construction and accuracy of subjective probabilities of HIV infection in rural Malawi
Volume 20 - Article 6

» A summary of Special Collection 1: Social Interactions and HIV/AIDS in Rural Africa
Volume 9 - Article 12

» The Fertility Pattern of Twins and the General Population Compared: Evidence from Danish Cohorts 1945-64
Volume 6 - Article 14

» Tempo-Adjusted Period Parity Progression Measures: Assessing the Implications of Delayed Childbearing for Cohort Fertility in Sweden, the Netherlands and Spain
Volume 6 - Article 7

» Tempo-Adjusted Period Parity Progression Measures, Fertility Postponement and Completed Cohort Fertility
Volume 6 - Article 6

» Attrition in Longitudinal Household Survey Data: Some Tests for Three Developing-Country Samples
Volume 5 - Article 4

» Frailty Modelling for Adult and Old Age Mortality: The Application of a Modified DeMoivre Hazard Function to Sex Differentials in Mortality
Volume 3 - Article 8

» Gender Preferences for Children in Europe: Empirical Results from 17 FFS Countries
Volume 2 - Article 1

» Introduction to "Research on Demographic Aspects of HIV/AIDS in Rural Africa"
Special Collection 1 - Article 1

» How do we know we need to control for selectivity?
Special Collection 1 - Article 4

» "Moving" and Marrying: Modelling HIV Infection among Newly-weds in Malawi
Special Collection 1 - Article 7

» Talking about AIDS: The influence of communication networks on individual risk perceptions of HIV/AIDS infection and favored protective behaviors in South Nyanza District, Kenya
Special Collection 1 - Article 13

Most recent similar articles in Demographic Research

» Value of Children and the social production of welfare
Volume 30 - Article 66    | Keywords: fertility

» Jobs, careers, and becoming a parent under state socialist and market conditions: Evidence from Estonia 1971-2006
Volume 30 - Article 64    | Keywords: fertility

» Couples' fertility decision-making
Volume 30 - Article 63    | Keywords: fertility

» A life-course approach to fertility
Volume 30 - Article 45    | Keywords: fertility

» White-Hispanic differences in meeting lifetime fertility intentions in the U.S.
Volume 30 - Article 43    | Keywords: fertility