Publisher/Institution: University of Washington Department of Economics
Abstract: Previous research on sex selective abortions has ignored the interactions between fertility, birth spacing and sex selection. This paper presents a novel approach that jointly estimates the determinants of sex selective abortions, fertility and birth spacing, using data from India’s National Family and Health Surveys. For well educated Indian women the predicted number of abortions during childbearing is six percent higher after sex selection became illegal than before while their predicted fertility is eleven percent lower and around replacement level. Women with less education have substantially higher fertility and do not appear to use sex selection.