Fertility and Rural Electrification in Bangladesh

Discussion Papers


by Tomoki FUJII and Abu S. SHONCHOY

March 2015


We use a panel dataset from Bangladesh to examine the relationship between fertility and the adoption of electricity with the latter instrumented by infrastructure development and the quality of service delivery. We find that the adoption of electricity reduces fertility, and this impact is more pronounced when the household already has two or more children. This observation can be explained by a simple household model of time use, in which adoption of electricity affects only the optimal number of children but not necessarily current fertility behavior if the optimal number has not yet been reached.

Keywords: time use, infrastructure, fertility, Bangladesh, ordered probit regression, panel data
JEL classification:  O20, J13

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