John E. Knodel photo

Reproductive Preferences and Fertility in Post-transition Thailand

Publication Abstract

Knodel, John E., Vipan P. Ruffolo, Parkamas Ratanalangkarn, and Kua Wongboonsin. 1996. "Reproductive Preferences and Fertility in Post-transition Thailand." Studies in Family Planning, 27(6): 307-318.

Two large national surveys in 1988 and 1993 provide new evidence on trends in family-size preferences in Thailand at a time when the Thai fertility transition is reaching its conclusion. Although the average preferred number of children has continued to decline, a resistant lower bound of two children is found for the vast majority of respondents, stemming, apparently, from a pervasive, although not inflexible, desire to have one child of each sex. Moreover, new evidence from birth-registration data indicates that the decline in the total fertility rate appears to have leveled off at about replacement level. These findings challenge the view that fertility in Thailand will continue to fall well below replacement level, and contradict recently expressed alarmist predictions of population decline in the foreseeable future.

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