Spatial Patterns and Determinants of Fertility in India

By Abhishek Singh, Kaushalendra Kumar, Praveen Kumar Pathak, Rajesh Kumar Chauhan, Adrita Banerjee

This article examines the spatial patterns of fertility in India and its determinants using data from the 2011 Indian Census and round 3 of the District Level Household Survey conducted in India in 2007-08. We estimated all the independent variables and the dependent variable for each of the 640 districts of India as defined for the 2011 Indian Census. Moran’s I, univariate and bivariate LISA, ordinary least squares (OLS) and two-stage least squares were used to analyse the data, and spatial error and two-stage spatial regression models were applied to account for the effects of spatial clustering. The four statistical models reveal different relationships between childlessness and fertility across districts and regions. A statistical association between son preference and fertility is also observed. Our findings demonstrate the importance of using spatial econometric models to analyse the determinants of fertility at district or lower levels.


  • fertility
  • census
  • India
  • Moran’s I
  • univariate LISA
  • bivariate LISA
  • spatial error regression models
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