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Assefa Hailemariam


Background: The Ethiopian government promulgated its first ever explicit, comprehensive and multisectoral population policy in 1993. The policy aimed at harmonizing population growth rate with that of the economy and the capacity of the country for sustainable socio-economic development. As with any population policy, there are important lessons to be learnt from the problems and challenges encountered during its implementation.

Objective: The paper assesses the extent to which the population policy objectives have been realized; highlights the successes registered and identifies challenges encountered in its implementation and proposes the way forward.

Methodology: Trend analysis using secondary data from censuses, surveys and UN sources were used and policy documents, research findings, development plan and program reports reviewed.

Results: Fertility, infant, under-five and maternal mortality have declined significantly. Female participation in education and labour force increased. A range of legal, policy and institutional frameworks have been developed and implemented on environmental security and on gender equity, equality and the empowerment of women. Legislative measures were also taken to remove harmful traditional practices. However, the pace of implementation has been slow and there are areas where not much progress was made.

Conclusion: Despite the progress made, there are critical challenges. Failure to establish the National Population Council; weak coordination and institutional arrangement due to absence of legally defined structure for implementation, lack of monitoring and evaluation system, absence of a comprehensive population program and financial constraints, among others are the major barriers. There is need to revise the policy and address these impediments and continuing and evolving challenges.

Open access

Emmanuel O. Olamijuwon and Clifford O. Odimegwu

preferences: A reason fertility tends to be too high or too low. Population and Development Review, 29(4): 627-646. Wang, H., Liddell, C., Coates, M., Mooney, M., Levitz, C., Schumacher, A., Apfel, H., Iannarone, M., Bryan Phillips, Lofgren, K., et al. (2014). Global, regional, and national levels of neonatal, infant, and under-5 mortality during 1990-2013: A systematic analysis for the global burden of disease study 2013. Lancet, 384(9947): 957-79. World Bank. (2014). Mortality rate, under-5 (per 1,000 live births) [Online]. Available: http

Open access

David Shapiro

Transition: Women’s Education, Employment, and Fertility. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. Shapiro, D., & Tenikue, M. (2015). Women’s education, infant and child mortality, and fertility decline in urban and rural sub-Saharan Africa: A quantitative assessment. Revised version of paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Population Association of America San Diego, CA, April 2015. United Nations Fund for Population Activities, UNFPA (2006). Decline in family planning funding must be reversed, says UNFPA. Press release 3 April 2006. http

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Gayle Clifford, Gill Craig and Christine McCourt

’ disclosure of maternal HIV status to children: key psychosocial correlates.’, Journal of HIV/ AIDS & Social Services . Taylor & Francis Ltd, 5(1), pp. 67–84. Leve, M., Rubin, L. and Pusic, A. (2011) ‘Cosmetic surgery and neoliberalisms: Managing risk and responsibility’, Feminism & Psychology , 22(1), pp. 122–141. doi: 10.1177/0959353511424361. Lupton, D. (2011) ‘“The best thing for the baby”: Mothers’ concepts and experiences related to promoting their infant’s health and development.’, Health Risk Soc. , 13, pp. 637–651. Madiba, S. and Matlala, C

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Jasmine Fledderjohann and Celia Roberts

–199. Greil, A. L., McQuillan, J., Johnson, K., Slauson-Blevins, K., & Shreffler, K. M. (2010). The hidden infertile: infertile women without pregnancy intent in the United States. Fertility and Sterility , 93 (6), 2080–2083. Hadley, R., & Hanley, T. (2011). Involuntarily childless men and the desire for fatherhood. Journal of Reproductive and Infant Psychology , 29 (1), 56–68. Harris, A. (2009). Gender as soft assembly . New York and London: Routledge. Hollos, M., Larsen, U., Obono, O., & Whitehouse

Open access

Rebecca Sear

. “The Natural History of Mothers and Infants: An Evolutionary and Anthropological Perspective.” In Understanding and Healing Emotional Trauma , edited by Daniela F Sieff, 182–202. UK: Routledge. Ivey, P K. 2000. “Cooperative Reproduction in Ituri Forest Hunter-Gatherers: Who Cares for Efe Infants.” Current Anthropology 41 (5): 856–66. Kadir, M M, F F Fikree, A Khan, and F Sajan. 2003. “Do Mothers-in-Law Matter? Family Dynamics and Fertility Decision-Making in Urban Squatter Settlements of Karachi, Pakistan.” Journal of Biosocial Science 35 (4): 545