Women's Inheritance Rights and Fertility Decisions: Evidence from India
Nayana Bose () and
Shreyasee Das ()
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Nayana Bose: Department of Economics, Scripps College
No 2101, DETU Working Papers from Department of Economics, Temple University
We analyze the impact of the Hindu Succession Amendment Act (HSAA) that mandated equal inheritance rights for women, on their fertility choices in the context of son-preference in rural India. We use the NFHS-3 data and exploit the variation in timing of the introduction of the HSAA across states to employ a difference-in-difference strategy. While both reform and non-reform women had similar son preference and desire for children, treated women, on average, had 0.8 additional children than their counterparts. We find evidence that the fertility increase was a result of women being able to use the stopping rule more effectively to achieve son-preference. Women impacted by the reform also had a higher proportion of sons for a given family size, indicating stronger son preference among treated women. Finally, we find the amendment lead to a decrease in domestic violence, improvements in maternal health, and women's decision-making power. This greater empowerment could be the potential mechanism that allowed women to increase fertility to realize their son preference.
Keywords: Inheritance Rights; Bargaining Power; Fertility; Son-Preference; Stopping Rules; Gender; India (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: J13 J16 O12 P48 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-dem and nep-dev
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Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:tem:wpaper:2101
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