Advertisement

Social Indicators Research

, Volume 127, Issue 2, pp 793–807 | Cite as

China’s Marriage Squeeze: A Decomposition into Age and Sex Structure

  • Quanbao Jiang
  • Xiaomin Li
  • Shuzhuo Li
  • Marcus W. Feldman
Article

Abstract

Most recent studies of marriage patterns in China have emphasized the male-biased sex ratio but have largely neglected age structure as a factor in China’s male marriage squeeze. In this paper we develop an index we call “spousal sex ratio” to measure the marriage squeeze, and a method of decomposing the proportion of male surplus into age and sex structure effects within a small spousal age difference interval. We project that China’s marriage market will be confronted with a relatively severe male squeeze. For the decomposition of the cohort aged 30, from 2010 to 2020 age structure will be dominant, while from 2020 through 2034 the contribution of age structure will gradually decrease and that of sex structure will increase. From then on, sex structure will be dominant. The index and decomposition, concentrated on a specific female birth cohort, can distinguish spousal competition for single cohorts which may be covered by a summary index for the whole marriage market; these can also be used for consecutive cohorts to reflect the situation of the whole marriage market.

Keywords

Marriage squeeze Spousal sex ratio Spousal age difference Age structure Sex structure Decomposition Projection 

Notes

Acknowledgments

This work was jointly supported by the key project of National Social Science Foundation of China (14AZD096, 13BRK025), and the HSSTP project of Shaanxi province (China). We would like to thank to the editor and anonymous reviewers for their valuable comments.

References

  1. Akers, D. S. (1967). On measuring the marriage squeeze. Demography, 4(2), 907–924.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Attané, I. (2006). The demographic impact of a female deficit in China, 2000–2050. Population and Development Review, 32(4), 755–770.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Bergstrom, T., & Lam, D. (1989a). The two-sex problem and the marriage squeeze in and equilibrium model of marriage markets. Paper presented at Annual Meetings of the Population Association of America, Baltimore, March 1989. http://escholarship.org/uc/item/4r00j58x#page-1. Accessed 8 June 2013.
  4. Bergstrom, T., & Lam, D. (1989b). The effects of cohort size on marriage markets in twentieth century Sweden. http://deepblue.lib.umich.edu/bitstream/handle/2027.42/101112/ECON095.pdf?sequence=1&isAllowed=y. Accessed 8 June 2013.
  5. Cai, Y. (2013). China’s new demographic reality: Learning from the 2010 census. Population and Development Review, 39(4), 371–396.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Das Gupta, P. (1993). Standardization and decomposition of rates: A user’s manual. U.S. Bureau of the Census, Current Population Reports, Series P23-186, U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, DC, 1003. https://www.census.gov/popest/research/p23-186.pdf. Accessed 1 Sept 2014.
  7. Das Gupta, M. D., Chung, W., & Li, S. (2009). Evidence for an incipient decline in numbers of missing girls in China and India. Population and Development Review, 35(2), 401–416.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Goodkind, D. (2006). Marriage squeeze in China: Historical legacies, surprising findings. In Paper presented at the 2006 Annual Meeting of the Population Association of America, Los Angeles, 30 March-1 April. http://paa2006.princeton.edu/papers/60652. Accessed 1 Sept 2014.
  9. Greenhalgh, S. (2013). Patriarchal demographics? China’s sex ratios reconsidered. Population and Development Review, 38(S1), 115–129.Google Scholar
  10. Guilmoto, C. Z. (2009). The sex ratio transition in Asia. Population and Development Review, 35(3), 519–549.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Guilmoto, C. Z. (2012). Skewed sex ratios at birth and future marriage squeeze in China and India, 2005–2100. Demography, 49(1), 77–100.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Heer, D. M., & Grossbard-Shechtman, A. (1981). The impact of the female marriage squeeze and the contraceptive revolution on sex roles and the women’s liberation movement in the United States, 1960 to 1975. Journal of Marriage and Family, 43(1), 49–65.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Hirschman, C., & Matras, J. (1971). A new look at the marriage market and nuptiality rates, 1915–1958. Demography, 8(4), 549–569.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Huang, R., Yang, G., Zhuang, Y., Qi, X., Zhai, D., Qi, M., Wang, X., & Lin, X. (2008). Report of Mortality level and life expectancy in China. p. 510. (In Chinese)..Google Scholar
  15. Huang, R., & Zeng, X. (2013). Infant mortality reported in the 2010 census: Bias and adjustment. Population Research, 37(2), 3–16. (In Chinese).Google Scholar
  16. Jiang, Q., Feldman, M. W., & Li, S. (2014). Marriage squeeze, never-married proportion and mean age at first marriage in China. Population Research and Policy Review, 33(2), 189–204.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Jiang, Q., Li, S., & Feldman, M. W. (2011a). Demographic consequences of gender discrimination in China: Simulation analysis of policy options. Population Research and Policy Review, 30(4), 619–638.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Jiang, Q., & Sánchez-Barricarte, J. J. (2012). Bride price in China: The obstacle to ‘Bare Branches’ seeking marriage. The History of the Family, 17(1), 2–15.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Jiang, Q., Sánchez-Barricarte, J. J., Li, S., & Feldman, M. W. (2011b). Marriage squeeze in China’s future. Asian Population Studies, 7(3), 177–193.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Jiang, Q., Song, W., & Sánchez-Barricarte, J. J. (2013). Forecasting china’s mortality. Population Review, 52(2), 87–98.Google Scholar
  21. Jiang, Q., Zhang, Y., & Sánchez-Barricarte, J. J. (2015). Marriage expenses in rural China. The China Review, 15(1), 173–202.Google Scholar
  22. Lam, D., & Marteleto, L. (2008). Stages of the demographic transition from a child’s perspective: Family size, cohort size, and children’s resources. Population and Development Review, 34(2), 225–252.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Li, X. H. (2013, March 5). China’s sex ratio at birth has been declined for four consecutive years. People’s Daily, p. 2.Google Scholar
  24. Li, N., Lee, R., & Tuljapurkar, S. (2004). Using the Lee-Carter method to forecast mortality for populations with limited data. International Statistical Review, 72(1), 19–36.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Morgan, S. P., Guo, Z., & Hayford, S. R. (2009). China’s below-replacement fertility: Recent trends and future prospects. Population and Development Review, 35(3), 605–629.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Muhsam, H. V. (1974). The marriage squeeze. Demography, 11(2), 291–299.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Murphy, R. (2014). Sex ratio imbalances and China’s care for girls programme: A case study of a social problem. The China Quarterly, 219, 781–807.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Population Census Office under the State Council (PCO). (2002). Tabulation on the 2000 population census of the People’s Republic of China. Beijing, China: China Statistics Press.Google Scholar
  29. Population Census Office under the State Council (PCO). (2012). Tabulation on the 2010 population census of the People’s Republic of China. Beijing: China Statistics Press.Google Scholar
  30. Schoen, R. (1983). Measuring the tightness of a marriage squeeze. Demography, 20(1), 61–78.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Tucker, C., & Van Hook, J. (2013). Surplus Chinese men: Demographic determinants of the sex ratio at marriageable ages in China. Population and Development Review, 39(2), 209–229.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Tuljapurkar, S., Li, N., & Feldman, M. W. (1995). High sex ratios in China’s future. Science, 267(5199), 874–876.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. United Nations, Department of Economic and Social Affairs, Population Division (2013). In World population prospects: The 2012 revision (DVD Edition). http://esa.un.org/wpp/Excel-Data/EXCEL_FILES/2_Fertility/WPP2012_FERT_F04_TOTAL_FERTILITY.XLS. Accessed 1 Sept 2014.
  34. Zhao, Z., & Chen, W. (2011). China’s far below-replacement fertility and its long-term impact: Comments on the preliminary results of the 2010 census. Demographic Research, 25, 819–836.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Quanbao Jiang
    • 1
  • Xiaomin Li
    • 1
  • Shuzhuo Li
    • 1
  • Marcus W. Feldman
    • 2
  1. 1.Institute for Population and Development Studies, School of Public Policy and AdministrationXi’an Jiaotong UniversityXi’anChina
  2. 2.Morrison Institute for Population and Resource StudiesStanford UniversityStanfordUSA

Personalised recommendations