Volume 23 - Article 36 | Pages 1031–1048

Variations in attitudinal gender preferences for children across 50 less-developed countries

By Kana Fuse

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Date received:23 Aug 2010
Date published:30 Nov 2010
Word count:3356
Keywords:comparative analysis, cross-national research, gender preferences for children


While a number of studies have examined gender preferences for children by studying behavioral measures, such as skewed sex ratios, sex imbalance in infant mortality, and sibling size/order; attitudinal measures have been analyzed less systematically. Using 50 Demographic and Health Surveys conducted between 2000 and 2008, this paper seeks to advance our understanding of gender preferences in developing countries by examining attitudinal measures cross-nationally. This study’s findings show that, while balance preference is the most common type of preference in the vast majority of countries, countries/regions vary in the prevalence of son and daughter preferences. A preference for sons is not always found; and, indeed, a preference for daughters is shown to prevail in many societies.

Author's Affiliation

Kana Fuse - National Institute of Population and Social Security Research, Japan [Email]

Other articles by the same author/authors in Demographic Research

» Daughter preference in Japan: A reflection of gender role attitudes?
Volume 28 - Article 36

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