The Impact of Reproductive Health and Family Planning Services on Health and Poverty


Principal Investigator:
Canning,David, Senior Faculty

Bloom, Fink

Global Health+Population

Dates of Research:
July 18, 2011 — July 18, 2014


The ultimate goal of the program of work will be to develop the evidence base for the effect of reproductive health and family planning services on fertility, child and maternal health, children’s education, female labor supply and household poverty. This evidence base will be useful in the policy debate about the role of family planning and reproductive health in generating economic growth and meeting the Millennium Development Goals (MDG) on poverty reduction, education, child and maternal health (MDG 1, 2, 4 and 5). Showing a significant causal effect on these indicators will generate an additional argument for family planning and reproductive health services as instruments for development over and above the argument for proving them as a right.


In summary we will produce evidence on:

  • The effect of reproductive health services on fertility and child and maternal health
  • The effect of family size on children’s health and education
  • The effect of fertility on female labor market participation
  • The effect of fertility on household income and poverty

We will disseminate our results to academics through peer reviewed articles and more general media for policy makers.