Fertility in Islamic Republic of Iran: Levels, Trends and Differentials during Three Decades (1967-1996)


  • Kazem Mohammad Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, School of Public Health, Tehran Iran
  • Farideh Khalaj Abadi Farahani National Research Center of Medical Sciences, Tehran Iran
  • Mehdi Rahgozar Welfare and Rehabilitation University, Tehran Iran
  • Mahmood Mahmoodi Farahani Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, School of Public Health, Tehran Iran




This study focuses on the fertility levels and trends of Iranian women aged 10- 49 years during three decades, 1967-1996. Information was collected by interviewing a systematic cluster sample of 13,253 households. The basic date of concern was the date of each live born child for a sample of women in reproductive age and whether the live born was alive at the time of the study. The detailed nature of these data collected for each birth enabled fertility rates to be calculated for exact periods before the survey, for exact calendar years. Higher fertility rates were found for the period 10-15 and 15-20 years preceding the survey. These high fertility levels are probably due to some socio-economic changes in favor of higher level of fertility immediately after the 1979 revolution. However the results of the present survey show during 1967-1996, the TFR1 had dropped from 6.38 to 2.88 (an expected TFR based on fertility behavior during 1992-96). This decline was probably due to delay in marriage and policy changes in favor of population control particularly since 1987. Despite this potential fertility decline in recent years, Iran is expected to face a baby boom as the offspring who were born during the 1976-86 reach to the reproductive age in the coming decades.