Journal of Population Economics

, Volume 29, Issue 2, pp 457–491 | Cite as

The unintended effects of cash transfers on fertility: evidence from the Safe Motherhood Scheme in India

Original Paper


India launched the Safe Motherhood Scheme (Janani Suraksha Yojana or JSY) in 2005 in response to persistently high maternal and child mortality rates. JSY provides a cash incentive to socioeconomically disadvantaged women for childbirth at health facilities. This study explores some unintended consequences of JSY. Using data from two large household surveys, we examine a policy variation that exploits the differential incentive structure under JSY across states and population subgroups. We find that JSY may have resulted in a 2.5–3.5 percentage point rise in the probability of childbirth or pregnancy over a 3-year period in states already experiencing high population growth.


Janani Suraksha Yojana JSY Conditional cash transfer Fertility India 
JEL Codes J1 I1 O1 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.The Center for Disease Dynamics, Economics and PolicyWashingtonUSA
  2. 2.The Public Health Foundation of IndiaGurgaonIndia
  3. 3.Princeton Environmental InstitutePrinceton UniversityPrincetonUSA

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