Childcare in the Context of One-Child Policy in China: Effects of the Number and Gender of Children in the Household
Fuhua Zhai, Columbia University
Qin Gao, Fordham University
The well-known one-child policy in China has been implemented since the late 1970s. In contrast, traditionally there has always been a strong preference for many children, particularly sons, in Chinese society. Thus one of the issues regarding child wellbeing might be whether the number and gender of children in the household matter with regard to childcare. Specifically, do children with siblings receive less care on average than only children? Do only girls receive less care than only boys? The paper uses the newly released 2000 wave data from the China Health and Nutrition Survey (CHNS). Overall, the multinomial logistic and OLS regressions did not demonstrate that child gender had significant effects on childcare arrangement, parental care hours, or childcare expenditure. However, the number of siblings was found to be negatively related to the possibilities of receiving center-based care and the amount of childcare expenditure of the focal child.