Demographic Responses to Economic Adjustment in Latin America

By G. Tapinos; A. Mason et al. | Go to book overview

countries experienced major and prolonged declines in real income, high rates of unemployment, rapid inflation, and significant cuts in government programmes. Under the circumstances, one would expect demographic impacts literally to leap off the page. In a few countries they do, but in most they do not.

The existing studies are mixed in their assessment about the demographic impacts, but there is no evidence of a widespread decline in childbearing or increase in mortality. In some Latin American countries, fertility and mortality do not seem to have been affected at all.

Our view of the 1980s may be considerably different ten years on from what it is today. Recent studies may have seriously underestimated the impact on fertility and mortality. The response of fertility and mortality to economic recovery, if it continues, should provide important clues to the social costs of economic crisis during the last decade.


REFERENCES

Ashton B. et al. ( 1984), "'Famine in China, 1958-61'", Population and Development Review, 10/ 4 (December), 613-46.

Becker G. S. ( 1960), "'An Economic Analysis of Fertility'", in Demographic and Economic Change in Developed Countries, Universities-National Bureau Conference Series, 11, Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, for the National Bureau of Economic Research.

-----and Lewis H. G. ( 1973), "'On the Interaction between the Quantity and Quality of Children'", Journal of Political Economy, 81 (March-April), S279-88.

Behrman J. R. ( 1988), "'The Impact of Economic Adjustment Problems on Health and Nutrition in Developing Countries'", in Bell David E. and Riech Michael R. (eds.), Health, Nutrition and Economic Crises: Approaches to Policy in the Third World, Dover, MA: Auburn House, 103-46.

-----and Deolalikar A. B. ( 1989), "'Health, Nutrition and Macroeconomic Adjustment with a Human Face: The Analytical Basis for the UNICEF Advocacy and a Case Comparison'", Conference on Social, Cultural and Behavioural Factors Affecting Health: What is the Evidence?, Australia National University, Canberra, 15-19 May 1989.

Ben-Porath Y. ( 1973), "'Short-term fluctuations in Fertility and Economic Activity in Israel'", Demography, 10 (May), 1985-204.

Bongaarts J. ( 1980), "'Does Malnutrition Affect Fecundity? A Summary of the Evidence'", Science, 208, 564-69.

-----and Menken J. ( 1983), "'The Supply of Children: A Critical Essay'", in Bulatao R. A. and Lee R. D. (eds.), Determinants of Fertility in Developing Countries, New York: Academic Press.

Boyd D. ( 1988), "'The Impact of Adjustment Policies on Vulnerable Groups: The Case of Jamaica, 1973-1985'", in Cornia G. A., Jolly R., and Stewart F. (eds.), Adjustment with a Human Face, Oxford: Clarendon Press, 125-55.

Bravo J. ( 1992), "'Economic Crises and Mortality: Short and Medium-term Changes in Latin America'", Proceedings of the Conference on the Peopling of the Americas, Veracruz: International Union for the Scientific Study of Population.

----- "'Demographic Consequences of Structural Adjustment in Chile'", Chapter 7 below.

-31-

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