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The Consequences of Gender Selection in the World

Although we are in the 21st century, gender selection is still a major problem. Gender-selective abortions performed in recent decades have caused an unexpected distortion in the ratio of males to females. Statistically, every 100 newborn babies are born 103-107 males. It is not yet clear, from a scientific point of view, why there is such unbalance. However, from the 1970s onward there has been an unnatural imbalance in the genus of newborns. In favor, of course, of males.

gender selection

Although we are in the 21st century, gender selection is still a major problem. Gender-selective abortions performed in recent decades have caused an unexpected distortion in the ratio of males to females. This is the result of a five-year study on the gender of newborns and world population.

The research comes from Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Statistically, every 100 newborn babies are born 103-107 males. It is not yet clear, from a scientific point of view, why there is such unbalance. However, the researchers have found that from the 1970s onward there has been an unnatural imbalance in the genus of newborns.

In favor, of course, of males. This would apply in particular to 12 countries around the world.

Gender Selection to Have a Male Heir

In some societies the birth of a male child is preferable to that of a daughter. These prejudices, together with the adoption of specific social policy lines, have increased the number of families choosing to abort female fetuses. In this way, they can hope to conceive at least one male.

A group of researchers at the National University of Singapore sifted through birth records and demographic data from 202 countries. 12 of these in particular have gone through a phase of strong social pressure on families to have male children. The gender imbalances that immediately caught the eye mainly concern China and India.

The year taken as a reference is 2005, when the ratio of infants to newborns appeared more unbalanced. In that period, there were about 100 births of girls per 118 births of boys in China. We are seeing the impact of these choices now that the boys of that generation are reaching reproductive age. Although the one-child policy was officially abolished in 2013, the population is struggling to grow due to a shortage of women who can have children. From 1970 to 2017 the “missing girls” were 11.9 million in China. In India, as well, they were 10.6 million.

We Need a Balance

Considering also the other countries with a surplus of boys (Albania, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Hong Kong, South Korea, Montenegro, Taiwan, Tunisia and Vietnam) there are 23.1 million girls missing in the world. With the exception of India and Vietnam, in recent years the ratio between newborns and infants has gradually returned to normal in all the countries analysed. However, it will be necessary to bear this imbalance in mind in estimates of the future of the world population.

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