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The World Fertility Survey: a basis for population and development planning, statement made at the World Fertility Survey Conference, London, England, 7 July 1980.
New York, N.Y., UNFPA, . 5 p. (Speech Series No. 54)The World Fertility Survey (WFS) is the largest social science research survey undertaken to date. From its inception in 1972 the WFS has received the full support of the UN and the UNFPA. This program has not only enhanced considerably our knowledge of fertility levels and fertility regulation practices in developing as well as developed countries but has also provided the UN system with internationally comparable data on human fertility on a large scale for the 1st time. The methodology developed by the WFS has made it possible to collect data on the individual and the household as well as the community. Information has become available not only on fertility levels, trends and patterns but also on fertility preferences and nuptiality as well as knowledge and use of family planning methods. Initial findings document the rather dramatic fertility decline taking place in many developing countries under various socioeconomic and cultural conditions. They also show the magnitude of existing unmet needs for family planning in the developing world which must be continuously brought to the attention of the governments of all countries. A most encouraging effect of the program, however, has been the fact that 21 industrialized countries have carried out, entirely with their own resources, fertility surveys within the WFS framework and in accordance with its recommendations, making it truly an internationally collaborative effort.
[Unpublished] 1980 Dec. 183 p. (ADSS AID/DSPE-C-0053)A general report follows the "Executive Summary" of this evaluation of the World Fertility Survey (WFS). The general report covers the following: previous evaluations, terms of references, and composition and itinerary for the Evaluation Mission; background and objectives of WFS (origin of the program; objectives, priorities, and strategies); organization aspects of the WFS program (headquarters, country participation, operating procedures, survey organization, and coordination); inputs (scope of support to the program, procedures for provision of funds, headquarters costs, costs of country surveys, and complementary support to the program); methodological aspects of the program (sampling procedures; questionnaires, survey procedures, and basic documentation; data processing and archives; and production of the 1st country report); execution of national surveys (nature, character, and significance of WFS assistance; implementation of survey procedures); analysis (evaluative, illustrative, 2nd stage, and comparative analyses); building the national capability (contribution to survey taking capability, contribution to data processing capability, and contribution to analatical capability); dissemination of survey results (national meetings, limits of WFS participation in national dissemination activities, actual and potential audience for WFS survey results, and libraries in the WFS despository system); and use of WFS survey results. Conclusions are reported, recommendations are made, and country reports are included for the Dominican Republic, Mexico, Jordan, Kenya, Nepal, and the Philippines. The 1st objective of the WFS is to help countries acquire scientific information that will allow them to describe and interpret their populations' fertility, to identify meaningful differentials in patterns of fertility and fertility regulation, and to provide improved data in order to facilitate efforts in economic, social, and health planning. As of July 1980, a total of 36 less developed countries had completed fertility survey fieldwork, and of these 21 had published their First Country Report. The following were among the conclusions reached concerning this 1st objective: the sampling, training, field supervision, editing, and data processing standards set by the WFS for the national executing agencies were higher than those which characterized previous surveys; data processing was the major bottleneck in the participating countries during the surveys; and at all stages of the survey there was a conflict between the time constraints on completing the survey and getting the report out and the desire to rely as much as possible on local personnel. As far as utilization of WFS data, at this stage the Mission was able to evaluate only the short range use of the results.