The Impact of Land Availability on Fertility Behavior in Nyeri District, Kenya

Karina M. Shreffler, Pennsylvania State University
Gloria Chepngeno, African Population and Health Research Center (APHRC)
F. Nii-Amoo Dodoo, Pennsylvania State University

Numerous historical and quantitative studies have examined the relationship between land availability and number of children. The current study examines not only quantitative data on farm size and fertility trends, but also focus group discussions and individual interviews to show how rural Kenyans perceive the role of land scarcity on the number of children they had. The recency of the Kenyan demographic transition provides a unique opportunity to examine the transition from the perspectives of those who actually induced the decline. The advantage of utilizing these narratives is that we are able for the first time to understand the reasoning and experiences of those who took part in the fertility decline.

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Presented in Session 13: The Onset of Fertility Decline in Africa