Title: Does gender discrimination contribute to India's population imbalance? A household level analysis

Authors: Sanjukta Chaudhuri

Addresses: Department of Economics, University of Wisconsin – Eau Claire, SSS 468, Eau Claire, WI 54702, USA

Abstract: Son preference in India results in abortion of female foetuses, and excess female infant mortality due to childhood neglect. Whether the increased use of abortion will reduce female infant mortality is a matter of debate. Using India|s National Family Health Survey (NFHS) 2005–2006, this paper demonstrates that after controlling for socioeconomic variables, an increase in the number of abortions will reduce female infant mortality. From a policy perspective, the results call for urgent enforcement of abortion laws to prevent its increasing abuse to abort female foetuses, and the need to encourage women|s education to reduce both female mortality disadvantages.

Keywords: India; gender discrimination; population imbalances; missing girls; abortion; pre-natal sex selection; post-natal discrimination; infant mortality; children; babies; boys; son preference; female foetuses; childhood neglect; National Family Health Survey; socio-economic variables; abortion laws; abortion abuse; mortality disadvantages; education; women; economic policies; emerging economies; international development.

DOI: 10.1504/IJEPEE.2011.043312

International Journal of Economic Policy in Emerging Economies, 2011 Vol.4 No.4, pp.390 - 406

Available online: 24 Oct 2011 *

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