The causal link between infant survival and fertility is established in both directions: Firstly, increasing infant survival reduces the parents’ demand for children.
And secondly, a decreasing fertility allows the parents to devote more attention and resources to their children.
Rising prosperity, rising education and the spread of health care around the globe are the major drivers of this progress.
One reason why we do not see progress is that we are unaware of how bad the past was.
Since the beginning of the age of the Enlightenment and over the course of modernization, the mortality of children below 5 years of age has declined rapidly.You have to take this long perspective to see the progress that we have achieved.On the y-axis we measure the number of annual live births per 1,000 people.Unfortunately the media is overly obsessed with reporting single events and with things that go wrong and does not nearly pay enough attention to the slow developments like these that reshape our world.A media that would report global development could have had the headline “The number of children dying globally fell by 455 since yesterday” and they wouldn’t have this headline once, but every single day over these more than 2 decades.