Migration, fertility, and state policy in Hubei Province, China

Demography. 1997 Nov;34(4):481-91.


Despite China's one-child family planning policy, the nation experienced a slight rise in the birth rate in the mid-1980s. Many observers attributed this rise to the heightened fertility of those rural-to-urban migrants who moved without a change in registration (temporary migrants), presumably to avoid the surveillance of family planning programs at origin and destination. Using a sequential logit analysis with life-history data from a 1988 survey of Hubei Province, we test this possibility by comparing nonmigrants, permanent migrants, and temporary migrants. While changing family planning policies have a strong impact on timing of first birth and on the likelihood of higher-order births, migrants generally do not have more children than nonmigrants. In fact, migration tends to lower the propensity to have a child. More specifically, the fertility of temporary migrants does not differ significantly from that of other women.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Birth Rate*
  • China / epidemiology
  • Developing Countries*
  • Family Characteristics
  • Family Planning Services / legislation & jurisprudence
  • Female
  • Health Policy / legislation & jurisprudence*
  • Humans
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Middle Aged
  • Population Dynamics*
  • Pregnancy
  • Rural Population / statistics & numerical data
  • Socioeconomic Factors
  • Urban Population / statistics & numerical data