Natural disasters and girls vulnerability: is child marriage a coping strategy of economic shocks in Indonesia?

Luh Putu Ratih Kumala Dewi, Teguh Dartanto

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20 Citations (Scopus)


Indonesia is a country that is highly prone to natural disasters, while at the same time faces a high child marriage prevalence compared to other Asia Pacific countries. Many studies show that in times of humanitarian crisis, child marriage practices, which heavily affect girls, are increasing. This study then intends to examine quantitatively any association between natural disasters and child marriages in Indonesia by using the 2015 National Socio-Economic Survey (SUSENAS) and the 2014 Village Potential Census (PODES). By applying logistic regression and controlling the model with several socio-economic conditions such as education, religion and regional characteristics, this study finds that natural disasters are positively associated with the probability of girls entering child marriage. Child marriage could be one of the options for households to reduce the burden when they face adverse welfare effects from natural disasters. Furthermore, disaster mitigation significantly reduces the probability of child marriage because disaster mitigation and preparedness will lessen the devastating shocks of the disasters, reducing the need to then enter into child marriage. The strong relationship between child marriage and natural disasters should attract the attention of policymakers to conduct better disaster mitigation programs, as well as to effectively provide assistance to the most vulnerable members of communities when natural disasters occur.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)24-35
Number of pages12
JournalVulnerable Children and Youth Studies
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2 Jan 2019


  • Child marriage
  • consumption smoothing
  • economic shocks
  • natural disaster
  • vulnerability


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