Migration and fertility selection: implications for urbanisation in Ghana

Arpita Chattopadhyay, University of California, San Francisco
Cornelius Y. Debpuur, Navrongo Health Research Centre

This paper disentangles the relative role of three mechanisms –selection, adaptation and disruption—in influencing migrant fertility in Ghana. Using the 1998 Ghana Demographic and Health Survey, we fit poisson, and sequential logit regression models to discern the effects of the above mechanisms on cumulative fertility and annual birth probabilities. Four types of migration streams are examined and compared with non-migrants at origin and destination. We find substantial support for the selection hypothesis among rural-urban and urban-rural migrants. Disruption is evident only in fertility timing of second and higher order births in Ghana. Our finding that migrants exhibit childbearing at about the same rates as natives at destination implies that the growth rate of the cities will slow down quickly. Although it remains clear that family planning efforts need to be targeted toward rural population in order to attain a reduction in national fertility level.

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Presented in Session 55: Migration and fertility changes in developing countries