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“Missing Women” in New Zealand: Exploring Gender Bias in Migrant Communities

49 months
Approved budget:
Associate Professor Rachel Simon-Kumar
Health issue:
Reproduction/fertility/sexual health
Proposal type:
Explorer Grant
Lay summary
We aim to conduct original research in New Zealand on excess female mortality in-utero and in infancy in ethnic minority communities. Existing research set in Asia and among some immigrant communities in the US, UK, Canada and Norway demonstrate the prevalence of unbalanced M:F sex ratios with demonstrable deficit of females. Globally referred to as the “missing women” research, this female deficit is recognised as an outcome of deliberate sex-selection techniques in communities where there is male-preference. Innovative methodological approaches blending critical social science theory with cutting-edge epidemiological methodology are used. In particular, the analysis uses longitudinal and cross-sectional variables – demographic, mortality, birth, health, migration, population – from the Integrated Data Infrastructure (IDI) dataset. This study will have significant implications for policy and public health practices, and also to influence future research on gender bias, ethnicity and child health, both domestically and globally.