Differences in Attitudes towards the Use of Modern Contraceptives among Kenyan Ethnic Groups, 1989 – 2008

Barbara Gontijo, Cedeplar, UFMG
Bernardo L. Queiroz, Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais (UFMG)
Dimitri Fazito, Cedeplar, UFMG

In the last 30 years, Kenya has shown a significant reduction in its total fertility rate and an increase in the percentage of married women using modern contraception. This paper aims to investigate how the change in contraceptive behavior relates to ethnic groups, between 1989 and 2008. Kenya is characterized by a history of high fertility, rejection of modern contraception and strong sense of ethnic belonging. We used data from the five editions of Kenya Demographic and Health Survey (KDHS) and constructed a measure of “positive attitude towards modern contraception”. We find that although ethnic background and sense of belonging is very important to Kenyans, it does not have a high correlation with positive attitudes today as it had in the recent past. We also find that differences in positive attitudes toward modern contraception have reduced considerably over the period investigated.

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 Presented in Session P9. Family Planning, Sexual Behavior, and Reproductive Health