How well has China’s family planning policy worked?

Jan 30, 2019 | 12:00 PM

Chen Wei (Professor, School of Sociology and Population Studies, Renmin University of China; HYI Visiting Scholar 2018-19)
Chair/discussant: Mary Brinton (Reischauer Institute Professor of Sociology, Department of Sociology, Harvard University)

Co-sponsored with the Fairbank Center for Chinese Studies

Demography is destiny. China’s economic success has been importantly driven by its demographic changes which might also determine China’s future. At the center of the demographics of China is its unique family planning policy. China’s family planning policy, which used to be described as one-child policy, has played a decisive role in fertility transition and transformation of fertility patterns, hence the population growth trends in China. Beginning in 2016, China implemented a two-child policy putting an end to the 35-years long one-child policy, which has also brought about marked changes in China’s fertility patterns. This talk will discuss the changing fertility policy and its impacts on fertility and population trends in China, and addresses two major questions: who were not complying with the one-child policy in the past, and now who are having second child? This research is conducted using China’s population census and fertility survey data, involving quantitative approaches and international comparative perspectives.