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Download Population and the World Bank: implications from eight case by World Bank. Operations Evaluation Dept PDF

By World Bank. Operations Evaluation Dept

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Additional resources for Population and the World Bank: implications from eight case studies, Page 81

Sample text

While far more effort could have been made to develop effective IEC, outreach, monitoring, evaluation, and research components, the Bank pressed the Government fairly strongly on many of these issues and seems to have taken advantage of opportunities as they emerged. In this case, the absence of resident staff assigned to the sector does not appear to have been a serious barrier to progress, given the liberal budgets for supervision and travel and inputs from other donors with technical staff in the field.

Above all else, this is probably the strongest force we know of to reduce desired family size and encourage spacing. However, these efforts were not undertaken with their potential demographic effect in mind. Had that been donehad the Bank searched for selective interventions into the development process that had the possibility of changing implicit benefits and costs of large familiesfar more might have been accomplished. It is well established, for example, that educating womenor simply keeping them in school for a few more yearsencourages later marriage and lower fertility rates within marriage.

Between two thirds and three fourths of this fertility decline has been due to increased use of modern contraceptive methods. Most of the remainder of the decline is accounted for by increasing age of marriage. These changes, in turn, have resulted from a combination of improvements in social and economic characteristics favoring smaller families and later age of marriage. These include, for example, improvements in the educational, employment, and social status of women; declines in infant mortality; decreasing opportunities for child labor; and decreasing dependence on children for old age security.

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