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Breast-Feeding Patterns and Determinants in Jordan


Akin, John S.; Bilsborrow, Richard E.; Guilkey, David K.; & Popkin, Barry M. (1986). Breast-Feeding Patterns and Determinants in Jordan. Population Bulletin of ECWA, 28, 5-41.


The purpose of this paper is to analyze the patterns and determinants of the extent and duration of breastfeeding in Jordan. Data is from a national sample of women surveyed by the Government of Jordan in 1976 as part of the World Fertility Survey program. Women's level of education appears to have the expected negative impact on the decision to ever breastfeed the child or not. Having other children aged 4-6 in the home seems to reduce the probability of ever breastfeeding. In terms of short and long-diration breastfeeders, mother's education has the expected negative effect within both groups of women, but father's education has a significant impact only for the longer duration breastfeeders. Working away from home seems to interfere with breastfeeding only at the longer durations. The effects on breastfeeding of being an urban resident or in-migrant are generally negative. The child's being male increases the likelihood of its being breast-fed only at longer durations. The use of the pill or other contracetpives has a larger negative impact on the short duration decision, but no significant effect on the long duration choice. Having female children 7 to 12 in the home is found to increase the probability of breastfeeding beyond 4.5 months among the short duration group. Policy inplications focus on factors influencing the decisions of women to continue breastfeeding for short to moderate durations. The statistical techniques used in this paper are contained in a technical appendix.

Reference Type

Journal Article

Year Published


Journal Title

Population Bulletin of ECWA


Akin, John S.
Bilsborrow, Richard E.
Guilkey, David K.
Popkin, Barry M.