n Studies in Economics and Econometrics - An empirical analysis of the determinants of fertility in developing countries

Volume 32, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 0379-6205


This paper examines the impact of various explanatory variables on the total fertility rate in developing countries. Based on data from the World Bank and the Population Reference Bureau for a sample of 107 developing countries, I find that the total fertility rate in a developing country is linearly affected by the fraction of married women who use all methods of contraception, per capita purchasing power parity gross national income, the percentage of females in the labour force, the infant mortality rate, and the extent of child labour. I also note that in spite of the high multicollinearity that exists among explanatory variables, they are all highly statistically significant and their coefficient estimates all have the expected sign. When the analysis is extended to a sub-group of 40 sub-Saharan countries the results remain qualitatively the same.

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