Population and Environment Study

Website: http://perl.psc.isr.umich.edu/populationandenvironmentstudy1.html

Institution: University of Michigan Population and Ecology Research Laboratory

Description: This study was originally funded through a Request for Applications (RFA) from the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD R01 HD-33551) for a five year period, 1995 through 2000. The study builds directly on the CVFS and uses the same study area, population, and sampling frame. The Population and Environment Study was designed to answer the following specific questions regarding the relationships between population change and environmental change: (1) To what extent do changes in marriage timing, household fission, childbearing, and migration influence changes in land use, water quality, and flora diversity? (2) To what extent do variations in land use, water quality, and flora diversity produce changes in marriage timing, household fission, child rearing, and migration? And (3) To what extent are the observed relationships between population processes and the environment produced by exogenous changes in the social and institutional context? This study includes a complete census of households within 171 neighborhoods, a household-level survey of agricultural practices and consumption patterns, land use maps of selected neighborhoods, flora data collection from surrounding forests and common lands, lab analysis and interviewer assessments of water samples collected from each neighborhood, a seasonal update of agricultural practices, and a monthly update of demographic events, including contraceptive use. A five year continuation (2001 through 2006) of the project was also subsequently granted by NICHD. The continuation grant includes funding for analysis of the data collected under the original grant, and focuses on a slightly refined set of research questions: (1) To what extent do marriage timing, household fission, childbearing, and migration influence land use and flora diversity? (2) To what extent do land use and flora diversity influence marriage, household fission, childbearing, and migration? (3) To what extent do agricultural practices and consumption patterns link population processes to environmental outcomes? And (4) To what extent are the observed relationships between population processes and the environment produced by exogenous changes in the social, economic, and institutional context? The continuation grant also includes funding for new data collection, including updates of land use and flora diversity measures, an extension of the monthly registry of demographic events, an update of the neighborhood contextual histories, a repeat of the household-level measures of agricultural practices and consumption patterns, and ethnographic information on environmentally-related behaviors and attitudes.