Chinese authorities have been trying for three years to reverse the devastating imbalances of their one-child policy and coax couples to have more children.
They’ve told couples that it’s their patriotic duty to have two babies. They’ve dangled tax breaks and housing subsidies. They’ve offered to make education cheaper and parental leave longer. They’ve tried to make it more difficult to get an abortion or a divorce.
None of this has worked. China’s birthrate remains stubbornly low, creating a demographic crisis that could hinder economic growth for decades to come.
But now, an economics professor at Fudan University in Shanghai has come up with another — and, unsurprisingly, controversial — solution: allow women to have multiple husbands, and they’ll have multiple babies.