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Microeconomic Theories of Fertility: A Critique

Boone A. Turchi
Social Forces
Vol. 54, No. 1 (Sep., 1975), pp. 107-125
Published by: Oxford University Press
DOI: 10.2307/2576080
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2576080
Page Count: 19
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Microeconomic Theories of Fertility: A Critique
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Abstract

This paper seeks to assess the current state of knowledge in the emerging field of the microeconomic analysis of fertility behavior. Concentrating on theories relevant to the United States and other industrial nations, this survey considers both the advantages and disadvantages of the consumer theory approach to fertility and discusses a number of specific issues including: the usefulness of the concept of "child quality" in fertility research, the impact of income on family size, the time frame of the fertility decision, husband-wife interaction in the decision process, and the analysis of fertility regulating behavior. In addition, the paper concludes with a discussion of empirical issues raised by the new microeconomic studies of fertility.

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