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In many countries of the Asia-Pacific region sons are given greater value than daughters. To combat a preference for sons, policymakers need to understand the underlying motivations of parents, including fathers. ICRW, in collaboration with the Center for Research on Environment, Health and Population Activities (CREHPA) in Nepal and the Institute for Social Development Studies (ISDS) in Vietnam examined men’s attitudes and behaviors in each country around son preference, gender equality, masculinity, intimate partner violence (IPV) and laws and policies related to women’s reproductive rights.
The study finds wide support for son preference, and conservative gender roles and norms as well as high levels of IPV. Although men are knowledgeable about laws and policies around gender equality, greater enforcement is needed coupled with effective messaging to combat inequitable norms underlying the practices the legislation is designed to address.