Individual Social Network Factors Across Disparate Relationships: Social Norms and Their Association With Adolescent Pregnancy in Rural Honduras

Holly Shakya , University of California, San Diego
John R. Weeks, San Diego State University
Nicholas Christakis, Harvard University

We used data from 176 villages in rural Honduras, including measures on demographics, reproductive health, social norms and social networks to look at the social network and social normative factors associated with having had an adolescent pregnancy. At what levels of social interaction are norms regarding adolescent pregnancy the most salient, and for what kind of norm? Initial results suggest that the association between a girls adolescent pregnancy and that of a social contact varies by relationship, with the strongest associations being between female siblings and same household members. When a girl’s social contact believed that younger age of pregnancy is optimal, she was more likely to have had an adolescent pregnancy, particularly if the alter was her mother, provider, or lived in the same household. We also found that girls who have had adolescent pregnancies were less embedded in strong cohesive networks, but at the crossroads of disparate networks.

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 Presented in Session 10. Fertility, Family Planning, Sexual Behavior & Reproductive Health 2