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Cannon, Abby C.; Mandal, Mahua; McGuire, Courtney; Calhoun, Lisa M.; Mummuni, Tolulope; & Speizer, Ilene S. (Online ahead of print). A Vignette-Based Approach to Understanding Social Norms around Family Planning in Three Nigerian Cities. Global Public Health.


Understanding the mechanisms through which social norms shape contraceptive use can help prevent unintended pregnancies in low-income countries. The Nigerian Urban Reproductive Health Initiative (NURHI) aimed to increase contraceptive uptake through advocacy, service delivery, and demand generation. Using data from focus group discussions, we examined whether social norms around family planning (FP), and specifically use of modern contraception (MC), varied among women and girls of reproductive age exposed to varying levels of the program in three Nigerian cities. Injunctive social norms were generally unfavourable of unmarried adolescent girls’ use of MC, though participants often shared exceptions for certain types of adolescents whose use of MC would be acceptable. There was greater acceptability for MC use by women who wanted to space or limit pregnancies. Participants reported that norms around FP and MC use have become more accepting in their communities over time. Normative differences between cities were identified. Participants’ perceptions of religious leaders’ support for FP use may have contributed to positively influencing social norms.


Reference Type

Journal Article

Year Published

Online ahead of print

Journal Title

Global Public Health


Cannon, Abby C.
Mandal, Mahua
McGuire, Courtney
Calhoun, Lisa M.
Mummuni, Tolulope
Speizer, Ilene S.

Article Type







Speizer - 0000-0001-6204-1316
Calhoun - 000-0002-3499-9372
Mandal - 0000-0002-1930-5010