Summary Most abortions in Polish hospitals and clinics are performed on social indications. In the 22 administrative areas of Poland, the high rates of divorce and large proportions of total population employed in non-agricultural pursuits reflect the individualistic approach to family planning which is characteristic of present-day urban society. Industrialization is disruptive to the normal functioning of the country's traditionally large families. In addition, the gross reproduction rate increases directly with the proportion of the peasant population in 17 voivodships and five large cities of Poland, whereas in the urban sector the gross reproduction rate has fallen below replacement level in the past few years. Rural birth rates will continue to decline. In view of increasing needs for future manpower, population policy aimed at increasing births through incentives to prospective mothers may achieve a limited degree of success in cities only among the educated segments of the female population.