Fertility intentions among the working population of Dalian City born between 1980 and 1989

Journal of Biosocial Science:1-12 (forthcoming)

Abstract

In October 2015, the Chinese Government announced that the one-child policy had finally been replaced by a universal two-child policy. China’s universal two-child policy is highly significant because, for the first time in 36 years, no one in an urban city is restricted to having just one child. This cross-sectional study was conducted to explore future fertility intentions and factors influencing individual reproductive behaviour in Dalian City. A total of 1370 respondents were interviewed. The respondents’ mean ideal number of children was only 1.73, and urban respondents’ sex preference was symmetrical. A total of 19.0% of the respondents were unmarried, 64.5% were married and had childbearing experience and only 6.3% of married respondents had two children. Among the 1370 participants, 30.4% stated that they would have a second child, while 69.6% refused to have a second child in the future. Binary logistic regression analysis showed that the following characteristics were associated with having only one child in the future: being female, being older, having a lower education level, being born in Dalian, having a lower family income and reporting one child as the ideal number of children. Model 2 showed that respondents who were female, had a lower family income and were unable to obtain additional financial support from parents were more likely to intend to stick at one child. In addition, respondents’ ideal number of children and childbearing experiences had a significant influence on future fertility intentions. These results suggest that fertility intentions and reproductive behaviours are still below those needed for replacement level fertility in Dalian City. China’s policymakers should pay more attention to these factors and try to increase individual reproductive behaviour.

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