Applying the Ready-Willing-Able Conceptualization to Mortality Transitions in Turkey

Rengin Aktar, University of Wisconsin-Madison

Until very recently, persistently high infant and child mortality rates in Turkey were described as a 'demographic puzzle' given the relatively high socioeconomic indicators and low fertility rates. This paper presents a new approach to the study of mortality change in developing countries as it models the parental decision-making about the use of modern health services after a child's illness as an adoption of a new form of behavior. The Ready-Willing-Able model which is taken directly from the formulation of Coale (1973) and has only been applied to fertility transitions in previous literature, is applied here to infant and child mortality data from Demographic Health Surveys, in order to assess the relative importance of the economic and the moral/cultural aspects of mortality change in Turkey during the last two decades.

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Presented in Poster Session 2