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Maths vs the Chinese government

27 Aug 09 | Re: Weird one-child quirk (or actually not)

Most people know about China’s one-child policy: in order to curb population growth, couples are only allowed to have one child. Most people also know that in rural areas, families who don’t have a son are allowed to have more children in the hope of having a son to help out with agricultural work.

I don’t know the actual detail of this exception, but let’s assume that:

Based on these assumptions, in a sample of 1024 couples:

That gives us a total of 1024 sons and 256 + 256 + 192 + 128 + 80 + 48 + 28 + 16 + 9 = 1013 daughters.

Hmm. I was thinking before I just worked that out that it would lead to way more girls, even though it was designed to make sure there were enough boys, but it’s actually equal. Score one for the Chinese government I suppose. Good policy.

Update: See next post for more things that are wrong with the above.

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