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Teen Pregnancy in Sub-Saharan Africa: The Application of Social Disorganisation Theory

Publication year: 
2015
Author (s): 
Mkwananzi, Sibusiso; Odimegwu, Clifford
Publication details: 
Unpublished
Abstract:

Teenage or adolescent pregnancy is noted as a major public health and demographic problem with medical, psychological, social and demographic implications. While different theories have been tested in existing studies, the theory of social disorganisation has not been applied in investigating teenage pregnancy. The social disorganisation theory is an example of an ecological framework and posits that crime is not randomly distributed, but occurs more frequently in ‘bad’ neighbourhoods than in ‘good’ neighbourhoods (Shaw and McKay; 1942). Using this theory and DHS surveys of eleven countries, we modelled females aged 15-19 with multilevel logistic regression to explore teenage pregnancy in West, East and Southern Africa. Teenage pregnancy was associated with community levels of poverty and unemployment while it was not associated with the head of the household’s age. Therefore, the study increases the understanding of teenage pregnancy within SSA regions.