Adolescent Fertility Among Syrian Refugee Women in Turkey: A Comparative Study
Arslan, Işıl Elif
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The aim of this thesis is to examine the determinants of adolescent fertility of ever-married Syrian migrant women living in Turkey in comparison with their counterparts in the host community. Data used in the thesis was obtained from the 2018 Turkey Demographic Health Survey (2018 TDHS) which included both national and Syrian migrant samples. Descriptive and multivariate analyses for both of the samples, namely logistic regression, were applied to explore the determinants of adolescent fertility composed of four groups of variables: socio-economic, regional, marriage- and fertility-related characteristics. To reveal the variation of determinants between generations, analyses were carried out separately for the age groups of 20-49 and 20-24. The analysis results show that, women in the 20-24 age groups are more prone to teenage fertility than other age groups in Turkey and Syrian migrants. Also, 20-year-olds were more prone to adolescent fertility among the 20-24 age group of Syrian immigrants. For both groups, educational levels of women and their spouses have the greatest impact on women's early motherhood compared to other variables, and this result is in line with the results of the previous relevant studies in the literature. In addition, the rural place of residence during childhood of woman is among the important factors that accelerate adolescent fertility among the Syrian group of ages 20-24. For both Syrian migrant women and women in Turkey, it was revealed that women who did not work before marriage, had a large age difference with their spouses, and who had their first menstrual period at an early age were more likely to give birth in their adolescence period. While the presence of a consanguineous relationship with the spouse was a significant predictor of adolescent fertility in both groups of women aged 20-49, no significant association was observed for the new generation (20-24 age group). Also, based on the evidence of this thesis, it is critical to put in place sound and sustainable policies in order to lower high adolescent fertility rate of Syrian immigrant women in Turkey.