Volume 33 - Article 4 | Pages 93–112
Explaining fertility: The potential for integrative approaches: Introduction to the Special Collection "Theoretical Foundations of the Analysis of Fertility"
|Date received:||15 Apr 2015|
|Date published:||08 Jul 2015|
|Weblink:||You will find all publications in this Special Collection “Theoretical Foundations of the Analysis of Fertility” at http://www.demographic-research.org/special/16/|
Background: A theoretical approach to explaining fertility behavior in developed countries needs an integrative perspective. As fertility behavior takes place in a multi-level setting of biological, psychological, social, economic, cultural, and political conditions, theories to explain fertility behavior need to be drawn from several academic disciplines and to address different levels of analysis.
Objective: With this Special Collection (SC) we contribute to the discussion by giving an update on current theoretical thinking about fertility. In our introduction, we elucidate some of the challenges of explaining fertility and fertility change from an integrated, interdisciplinary perspective, and address problems of theory construction. We address possible points of departure for tackling these challenges. We then introduce the articles gathered in the SC.
Conclusions: Demographers have already presented some promising attempts at a more comprehensive model of fertility behavior and fertility trends. However, further joint efforts by scholars of the disciplines involved, both theoretically and empirically, are needed. One should continue a discussion promoting an integrated system of concepts and an exchange between the disciplines on key research questions.
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