Fertility Convergence in the Indian States: An Assessment of Changes in Averages and Inequalities in Fertility
Genus, LXVIII (No. 1), 65-88, (2012)
24 Pages Posted: 9 Aug 2013
Date Written: December 12, 2012
Are the fertility rates across the Indian states and socioeconomic spectrum converging? This paper seeks to answer to this question and makes three original contributions: First, a theoretical framework is conceptualised to understand the progress in fertility transition alongside socioeconomic and health transition. Second, the paper quantifies the progress in fertility transition across the major states of India. Third, fertility convergence is estimated both in terms of absolute and relative distribution of total fertility rates between the states and socioeconomic groups. The fertility transition plots and Change-point estimates indicate varying pattern of fertility transition, critical Change-points and steady positions among Indian states. The testing of regression based convergence measures for average fertility rates reveals that fertility rates were diverged over the long-term period of 1981-2009. However, the convergence measure estimates in sub-periods suggest pronounced divergence of fertility rates during the initial period of 1981-91 but, subsequently replaced with considerable volume of convergence for the recent period of 2001-09. Overall, India’s fertility transition is characterised by a transformation from progressive transition disequilibrium to progressive transition equilibrium in fertility rates for the Indian states and socioeconomic spectrum.
Keywords: Fertility Transition, Fertility Decline, Fertility Convergence, Inequality, India, Region Pattern
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