Zainab Khan

joint seminars
Development and political economy seminar
phd seminar

Zainab Khan

Université Catholique de Louvain
The effect of norms on intensive and extensive margin of fertility and its implications for quantity quality trade-off in Pakistan

IBD Salle 24

Îlot Bernard du Bois - Salle 24

5-9 boulevard Maurice Bourdet
13001 Marseille

Tuesday, December 5 2017| 12:30pm to 2:00pm

Timothée Demont: timothee.demont[at]
Alice Fabre: alice.fabre[at]
Edward Levavasseur: edward.levavavsseur[at]
Océane Piétri: oceane.pietri[at]
Morgan Raux: morgan.raux[at]


This study explores the effect of quantum norms on the trade-off between the quality and quantity of children in Pakistan. Quantum norms are fertility norms related to the socially acceptable number of children including childlessness.  The objective of this study is to develop a comprehensive approach linking wage, wealth and norms to both margins of fertility and to quality of children. To do this I employ indirect inference. I first conduct an empirical analysis to get stylized facts on data regarding fertility. The empirical analysis suggests higher norms decrease investment in education of children. It also suggests that women with higher opportunity cost may not be childless in case they are exposed to higher norms. This may explain why some countries with same level of development show different level of quality-quantity trade-off. In the next step I develop a theoretical model that forms relationship between fertility, wage, non-labour income, norms and quality of children.  I identify the structural parameters of the theoretical model by minimizing the distance between moments generated by empirical model and those generated by theoretical model. These parameters are used to simulate the quality of children in Pakistan. This strategy is the main contribution of the study and it provides a mechanism to infer about the quality of children despite the fact that we do not observe education of the children in data neither do we know anything about the expenditure made by parents on the education of children. This is very important from policy makers’ perspective as to device a policy it is important to know the state of the matter. This strategy could be used in other countries where policy makers are constrained by the availability of data on education of children.