Fertility Differentials by Education and Community HIV Prevalence

Laurie DeRose, University of Maryland

Both individual and community education can be expected to condition the impact of HIV prevalence on fertility. Existing literature seems to suggest that the epidemic will only solidify the negative relationships between socioeconomic status and fertility that we have all grown accustomed to. However, when HIV-related mortality reduces the returns to schooling by truncating the time horizons for such returns (and introducing uncertainty about them), educated individuals who would otherwise have educated their children are the most likely to experience changes in the costs and benefits of children. Fertility differentials at the individual level could therefore alter radically. Whether better-educated communities respond differentially to HIV prevalence also receives empirical investigation here.

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Presented in Session 56: Social Demographic Aspects of Fertility: International Perspectives