Wong C-K, Tang K-L, Ye S. The perceived importance of family-friendly policies to childbirth decision among Hong Kong women
Int J Soc Welfare 2010: ••: ••–••© 2010 The Author(s), Journal compilation © 2010 Blackwell Publishing Ltd and the International Journal of Social Welfare.
Declining fertility is a problem in many advanced industrialised countries, calling for government action. While positive findings have been established between family policies and fertility levels in European countries, empirical studies on family-friendly policies and their impact on fertility levels have been few and far between in East Asia. Based on a random telephone survey of 645 young women, this study examined the perceived importance of family-friendly policies to childbirth among Hong Kong women of childbearing age. Also investigated was whether public policies could have an impact on the decision to have a child. The findings give support to both the risk-society theory and the rationality theory; family-friendly policies such as tax credits, extended childcare and flexitime enhance the risk management capacity of women and reduce the cost of child rearing. The study also found that demographic factors such as age, education, and having children or not are significant to the intent to bear children.