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Speeding Up for a Son Among Immigrants in Canada

Yigit Aydede and Marie-Claire Robitaille ()
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Marie-Claire Robitaille: Saint Mary’s University

Population Research and Policy Review, 2022, vol. 41, issue 5, No 14, 2233-2265

Abstract: Abstract Parents are often not indifferent to the sex of their children. Indeed, while there is an overall preference for having mixed sexes in many Western countries, parents often prefer to have sons in some Asian and Caucasian countries, such as Armenia and Azerbaijan. Although migration may partly change preferences, immigrants are likely to bring with them, to some extent, the fertility preferences from their origin country. Using the confidential major files of the 2001 and the 2006 Canadian censuses, we perform Cox Proportional Hazard Models on samples ranging from a little over 1000 to a little less than 700,000 birth intervals, depending on the ethnic group, for a total of 1.1 million births. We show that some ethnic groups, such as Chinese, Indian and South Korean ethnics are more prone to shorten birth spacing after having two daughters than two sons. For example, the median birth duration between the second and third child of Indian ethnics is 39 and 53 months for two girls and two boys families, respectively. Comparing immigrants who have made their fertility decisions abroad with those having made their fertility decisions in Canada, we show that son preference changes with migration. We also demonstrate that the same ethnic groups implement their son preference in many ways, such as sex-selective abortions, differential stopping behaviours and short-birth spacing, we conclude that among Indian, Chinese and West Central Asian & Middle-Eastern ethnics, extreme short-birth spacing, of less than 6 months between birth and conception, are more common after the birth of a daughter than after the birth of a son.

Keywords: Birth spacing; Canada; Ethnic groups; Immigration; Revealed son preference; J13; J15; J16 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2022
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DOI: 10.1007/s11113-022-09723-5

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Handle: RePEc:kap:poprpr:v:41:y:2022:i:5:d:10.1007_s11113-022-09723-5