The Spatial Dynamics of U.S. Fertility, 1970‐1990

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4 Scopus citations


The fertility downturn in the U.S. since the baby boom has been accompanied by a growing divergence in regional fertility rates. This paper examines the spatial implications of recent fertility trends. Two interrelated questions are posed. First, how and why have the time trends in fertility varied spatially? Second, how have the regional patterns of fertility changed over time? These questions are investigated using a continuous spatio‐temporal model of U.S. fertility built using the Dual Expansion Method. Results indicate that the pace of fertility decline has been the most rapid in the Northeast and the slowest in the West. Further, the traditional North‐South distinctions in fertility rates are being replaced by East‐West patterns. These changes tentatively suggest that regional ethnic composition is becoming an increasingly important factor in accounting for the spatial variation of U.S. fertility.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)229-246
Number of pages18
JournalGrowth and Change
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 1993
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Global and Planetary Change


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