Abstract

This article analyzes the determinants of contraceptive use in Bangladesh, focusing on the roles of demand for additional children and of family planning service supply. Data from the Matlab Family Planning Health Services Project are used to examine the contributions of these factors to the difference in prevalence of modern contraceptive use between the project area and a control area served by the government family planning and health programs. Results of multivariate analysis deriving from the Easterlin synthesis framework show the importance of family planning supply factors in reducing psychic and resource costs of fertility regulation and in activating latent demand for contraception. Demand for birth limiting and for birth spacing emerge as important explanatory factors; demand for birth spacing is greater in the project area, and both demand measures exert a stronger effect on contraceptive behavior in that area.

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