Natural Resource Responsibility and Seasonal Patterns in Contraceptive Behavior: Evidence from Nepal

Elizabeth G. Sutherland, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

This paper presents the use of discrete-time multilevel hazard models to explore the effects of natural resource responsibility and season on contraceptive adoption and discontinuation between 1997 and 2003 in the Western Chitwan Valley of Nepal. Data from the Chitwan Valley Family Study, containing a sample of 1,761 women of reproductive age, are used for this analysis. Women in this study are found to be less likely to adopt any method and more likely to discontinue non-permanent methods in the monsoon months than in the winter. There is little evidence to suggest that this seasonal pattern in contraceptive behavior is significantly stronger among women with greater natural resource responsibilities, although more sensitive measures of seasonal responsibility would be desirable for better assessing this relationship. This study contributes to the literature by looking beyond seasonality in births to examine the effects of season and natural resource responsibility on contraceptive behavior.

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Presented in Session 66: Contraception