The Effects of Individual Level Autonomy and Community Context on the Desire for Additional Children and Contraceptive Use in the 1998/1999 India DHS

John Sandberg, McGill University

This research builds on advanced empirical measurement models of women’s autonomy in India, testing whether individual level autonomy or community level effects are most pronounced in influencing women’s fertility outcomes. Data on over 40,000 married women in the 1998/1999 India DHS are used to construct and test appropriate individual latent class measurement models of women’s autonomy using indicators of household decision making, freedom of movement and acceptability of spousal abuse. Desire for additional children, current and ever use of modern contraceptives in interaction with husband’s beliefs about the acceptability of contraception are modeled on predicted class membership and probabilities derived from these models and additional controls using hierachical linear modeling techniques, specifying fixed effects at the village level.

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Presented in Poster Session 1: Fertility, Family Planning, Reproductive Health