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Second and Third Births in Armenia and Moldova: An Economic Perspective of Recent Behaviour and Current Preferences
Authors: Billingsley, Sunnee
Source: European Journal of Population, Volume 27, Number 2, May 2011 , pp. 125-155(31), DOI:
Topic(s): Economics
Fertility preferences
Country: Asia
Eastern Europe
Published: MAY 2011
Abstract: Abstract: Little is known about fertility in Armenia and Moldova, the two countries that have both, according to national statistics, experienced very low levels of fertility during the dramatic economic, social and political restructuring in the last two decades. This article fills this gap and explores recent fertility behaviour and current fertility preferences using 2005 Demographic and Health Survey data. Educational differences in fertility decline and the association between socioeconomic indicators and fertility preferences are considered from an economic perspective. Special emphasis is given to determining whether and how diverging economic conditions in the two countries as well as crisis conditions may have influenced fertility. Second parity progression ratios (PPR) reveal a positive relationship between the degree of decline from 1990 to 2005 and education, whereas third PPR declines appear the greatest for women with both the lowest and highest education. In both countries, logistic regression results suggest that working women are more likely to want a second child, as well as want the child sooner university than later in Armenia, and the wealthiest women in Armenia have a higher odds of wanting a third child. Dual-jobless couples are less likely to want a second child in Moldova and more likely to postpone the next child in Armenia. These findings offer some insight into the shifts in fertility behaviour in these two post-Soviet countries and suggest that despite diverging economic trajectories and a lessening commitment to the two-child norm in Moldova, determinants of fertility behaviour and preferences have remained similar in both countries. Keywords: Fertility preferences; Parity progression; Postponement; Post-communist; Economic explanations; Armenia; Moldova; Higher-order births; Post-communist; Postponement; Employment; Préférences de fécondité; Probabilité d'agrandissement des familles; Ajournement des naissances; Post-communiste; Explications économiques; Arménie; Moldavie