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Female family size ideals as population policy objectives for Latin America: Demographic and methodological considerations

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Abstract

This paper discusses the use of female family size ideals in the formulation of population policies in Latin America and the demographic implications of and barriers to the attainment of this objective. Using a specially developed cohort projection model that incorporates contraceptive activity and resource limitations, the authors empirically analyze El Salvador, Mexico and Venezuela.

Results indicate that in the next two decades most cohorts of women now in the reproductive ages will experience completed family size at levels that far exceed stated ideal family size. Using data based on optimistic assumptions concerning the effectiveness of family planning services, the authors feel that achieving ideal family size could be possible. Despite the apparent difficulties involved in reducing the high fertility of these populations, the authors conclude that family size ideals as stated by women deserve further attention as a policy alternative.

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This is a revised version of a paper given at the 1975 Annual Meeting of the Population Association of America, Seattle, Washington, April 1975. Research for this paper was funded by Population Council Grant T73.54.

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Lawrence, C.E., Mundigo, A.I. Female family size ideals as population policy objectives for Latin America: Demographic and methodological considerations. Policy Sci 8, 437–454 (1977). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF01727409

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Keywords

  • Family Planning
  • Economic Policy
  • Resource Limitation
  • Family Size
  • High Fertility