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Melvin Stephens

Arland Thornton photo

Ideational Influences on Marriage and Childbearing

a PSC Research Project

Investigators:   Arland Thornton, William Axinn, Jennifer S. Barber, Dirgha Ghimire

This study investigates the influence of ideational factors on both nuptiality and fertility in Nepal. The research examines: (1) how ideational factors influence marriage behavior, focusing primarily on the transition into first marital union; (2) how ideational factors intersect with socioeconomic structures to influence entrance into marriage; (3) how ideational factors influence fertility, considering both childbearing and the use of contraception; (4) how ideational, social, and economic structures intersect and combine to influence contraception and childbearing; and (5) how these ideational influences vary by both gender and age, and by husband-wife dynamics for fertility decisions.

For this study, new data are collected in the Chitwan Valley Family Study (CVFS), an already extensive accumulation of information concerning socioeconomic factors measured at the individual, family, and community levels. New socioeconomic information is being collected, and an extensive set of ideational measures are updated every six months. Also, data are collected on family and demographic events for all months subsequent to the year-one interview. These measures of ideational and structural factors will be used to predict subsequent marriage, contraception, and childbearing. The pre-existing panel data, a wave of new measures of beliefs and values, quarterly updates of changes in those beliefs and values, and monthly information about marriage and childbearing will be used to investigate the ways in which various dimensions of values and beliefs influence subsequent marriage and childbearing behaviors. We can then examine how these ideational factors combine with socioeconomic structures in affecting marriage and childbearing.

Funding Period: 04/01/2008 to 03/31/2014

Country of Focus: Nepal

Related Holdings, ICPSR Study #34479

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