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11 responses to “The best place in the world to be a mother”

  1. Paul Norton

    Very interesting, Brian.

    In the past week I came across an article in the Fairfax press by a booster arguing that America’s demographics (including the high birth rate) are a source of strength relative to other countries. If we dig deeper I suspect that we could find linkages between the causes of America’s high birth rate and its position in the State of the World’s Mothers rankings. To give just one example, the US has by far the highest rate of teenage childbearing of any developed capitalist economy and, probably not coincidentally, a rate of abortion that is much higher that that in countries with more liberal and less contested abortion laws and provision.

  2. Sam

    Mali should be ranked ahead of Niger.

  3. Paul Norton

    A point that shouldn’t need making is that the overall rankings of Australia and America would be brought down considerably by the circumstances of Aboriginal, Native American and African-American women.

  4. Sam

    The Scandinavians will score well on participation of women in national government. Not sure that necessarily translates into being good for mothers.

  5. Sam

    America’s demographics (including the high birth rate) are a source of strength relative to other countries.

    The argument is that countries like Japan and much of Europe will soon be one big nursing home.

  6. Chris

    Categories 2,3,4 seem like a bit of an odd thing to include given they’re more about parents and children generally (and 4 covers everyone) rather than mothers specifically. Even 5 should probably be specific to participation by mothers rather than women. I wonder what the rankings would look like if you exclude those three?

  7. Martin B

    5 seems like a proxy for measuring something like ‘social inclusion of/status accorded to women’ but I agree it seems a slightly odd choice of proxy.

  8. Chookie Inthebackyard

    Frankly, I think they’re a pretty strange range of measures for maternal wellbeing. Yes, maternal mortality is understandable, but what about maternal morbidity? Maternity leave arrangements? Public and legal support for breastfeeding in public or the workplace? Domestic violence prosecutions? Support for single parents?

    (Nice to see LP back again, btw. Been lurking.)

  9. Shingle

    Most interesting. Thank you. And I think @9 has some good points – there are many other criteria that could be brought to bear in assessing maternal wellbeing. Supposedly the participation of women in politics should translate into policies that support mothers, but it doesn’t always follow (as we saw with the recent changes to single parent benefits).