Analyzing the Determinants of Child Nutrition in Rural Bangladesh: Application of Quantile Regression


  • Mahbub Hossain
  • M. A. Sattar Mandal


Nutritional status, Rural children, Quantile regression


Despite recent success in achieving major development goals, Bangladesh still lags behind in respect of reducing
the incidence of child undernutrition which usually causes illness, poor physical and cognitive development,
or even death. Recognizing the importance of child nutrition stated in the Sustainable Development Goals, the
Government of Bangladesh is keen on making success in reducing child malnutrition in the country, especially
in the rural areas. In this respect, it is imperative to understand what determines child nutrition and whether or
not the child nutrition determining factors exert similar effects at different points of the distribution of child
nutrition. By using data from three rounds of a nationally representative rural household survey, this paper
finds that child’s gender, age, and birth weight, parents’ education and their health, household’s socioeconomic
status, and availability of local health care facility are crucial in determining child nutrition. Furthermore,
quantile regression results suggest that the effects of these determinants tend to vary across different points
of the nutritional status. Nonetheless, parents’ health and birth weight seem to have strong influence which is
consistent throughout the distribution of child nutritional status. Thus, the findings of this paper have policy
relevance, which is worthy of the attention of the national and international development partners in Bangladesh.