Government Efforts to Influence Fertility: The Ethical Issues

  • Jonathan Lieberson


In the past twenty years or so “the population problem” has been added to the world’s agenda not simply as the subject of scientific study and public discussion but also impinging on policy intervention. In the international arena, the United Nations has held meetings, including the first intergovernmental World Population Conference at Bucharest in 1974, passed resolutions, sponsored programmatic efforts, and established a special organization to concentrate on the issue (the United Nations Fund for Population Activities). National governments, both developed and developing, have set up various commissions on the subject and beyond that have adopted policies and organized programs to influence demographic trends. Private foundations, universities, and voluntary organizations have devoted substantial resources to research, training, technical assistance, service, and information distribution. In short, there has been, one might say, a minor revolution in the field—spotty in space and time, trendy in its ups and downs, filled with visions, revisions, and fashions, controversial as to both ends and means, but still maintaining a dynamic vitality of its own.1


Family Planning Ethical Issue Incentive Program Family Planning Program Population Policy 
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© Springer-Verlag New York Inc. 1988

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jonathan Lieberson

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