In DepthDemography

Analysis of China's one-child policy sparks uproar

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Science  20 Oct 2017:
Vol. 358, Issue 6361, pp. 283-284
DOI: 10.1126/science.358.6361.283

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A new study of China's one-child policy is roiling demography, sparking calls for the field's leading journal to withdraw the paper. The paper concerns claims about how many births were avoided by the policy, which was in place from 1980 to 2016. Scholars have long contested the Chinese government's assertion that the policy avoided 400 million births. Through comparisons with a number of other countries, though, independent researcher Daniel Goodkind suggests that the number may, in fact, have merit. In comments sent to editors of the journal Demography, other scholars contend that Goodkind's paper relies on faulty assumptions and is "morally irresponsible."