Child’s Gender Preference: Implication on Childbearing Intention among High Fertility Married Women in Stable Union in Malawi

Martin E. Palamuleni, North-West University, South Africa

Child’s Gender Preference (GP) frequently leads to high fertility which has adverse effect on family health. The link between women’s fertility intention and GP as found in this study is less explored in Malawi. This study utilized 2010 MDHS dataset and focused on married women aged 15-49 years (n=1739) in stable unions who currently have at least 5 living children. Data were analyzed at bivariate and multivariate levels (a=0.05). About 39.7% of the women have GP and higher proportion (23.3%) has preference for females. Age, region, wealth-quintile, religion, residence and family planning programmes were significantly associated with fertility intention. Women who have GP were 1.35(C.I=1.038-1.742, p<0.05) times more likely to have intention to bear more children than those who have no GP. The odd ratio changed to 1.38(C.I=1.046-1.822, p<0.05) after adjusting for potential confounding socio-demographic variables. Gender preference influences intention to bear more children among high fertility women.

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 Presented in Session P3. Fertility Intentions and Behaviors