Abstract: This short paper offers an original look at the fertility transition in India through the lens of the period parity progression ratios (PPPRs). Taking advantage of nearly 300,000 birth history data collected in three nationally representative surveys (National Family Health Survey, NFHS) conducted in 1992-1993, 1998-1999 and 2005-2006, fertility changes by parity are described from 1977 to 2004. The data indicate that the decline of fertility in India over the last 25 years has been primarily caused by a reduction of third and higher-order births and that a two-child family model is therefore emerging in the country. To assess the parity-based analysis, lifetime average parities are computed and compared to independently derived total fertility estimates from the Sample Registration System (SRS). The results show that the use of the parity progression ratios in the analysis of Indian survey data yields fairly consistent fertility levels and trends in comparison with traditional total fertility estimates obtained from the SRS and that the PPPRs present thus an alternative tool to estimate the consistency and quality of total fertility estimates derived from other data sources.
Population, English edition – Institut national d'études démographiques
Published: Nov 24, 2010
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