Thursday, 5 June 2008

Australians opting for one child?

A depressing new study, reported in the Sun Herald claims that:

"Australian couples are increasingly having only one child, many so that they can "get ahead". The percentage of couples having only one child increased from 8 per cent in 1991 to 11 per cent in 2001, and should be 15 per cent by 2021, according to a study published in the independent academic magazine Journal of Population Research."

Good to see that we are continuing down the path of demographic suicide.

"Report author Nick Parr, a senior lecturer in demography at Macquarie University, said many couples were choosing to have one child because they believed single children were "higher quality" and more likely to succeed with more parental attention.""

Amazingly, the study suggests that attending a catholic school does actually have some impact, with Catholics more likely to have more than one child than others.

The study itself is far from neutral, finding that the one child policy actually works in terms of the marks of secular success:

"Single children gain higher than average educational achievements, income and wealth," Dr Parr said.

"This reflects the time, energy and material resources which their parents can give to them being undiluted by the competing demands of siblings. Progression from one to two children has ramifications for family budgets, parental time use and the socialisation and wellbeing of the existing child."

It would have been nice if he had looked at a few other indicators - like psychological stability and happiness, for example, and willingness to contribute to their communities!

He also found unmarried women were less likely to have another child, 'reflecting the greater instability of non-marriage relationships'.

1 comment:

Therese said...

Report author Nick Parr, a senior lecturer in demography at Macquarie University, said many couples were choosing to have one child because they believed single children were "higher quality" and more likely to succeed with more parental attention.

I wonder what the parents think makes a child, higher quality?