The dynamics of timing and spacing of births in Ethiopia: A focus on urban-rural differences

Daniel Sahleyesus, University of Colorado at Boulder
Roderic Beaujot, University of Western Ontario

Although studies invariably show that, in all regions of the world, fertility levels vary between urban and rural areas, recent years have witnessed a substantial decline of average fertility in major urban centers of Ethiopia. TFR in urban areas is half the national total, a phenomenon which applies to only few other countries of sub-Saharan Africa. Using data from the 2000 Ethiopia Demographic and Health Survey, this study examines the relationship between a set of theoretically relevant covariates and the timing and spacing of births for urban and rural areas. We apply life table techniques and parametric hazard models for the analysis. Three separate parametric hazard models are estimated for each birth interval. The first and second models, respectively, tested the independent effects of demographic-proximate and socio-cultural variables on the timing of births while the full model tested their combined effects.Major findings and their policy implications are discussed in relation to key theoretical paradigms of reproductive change.

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Presented in Session 48: Determinants of fertility change in Africa