Attitudes of Different Religions Toward Surrogacy: Analysis of 11 Countries' Situation Using Machine Learning Approach and Artificial Neural Networks

Yıldız M., Felix E. O., Ademiju O., Noibi T. O., Gomes R. F., Tanimowo A., ...More

Journal of Religion and Health, vol.62, no.5, pp.3230-3251, 2023 (AHCI) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 62 Issue: 5
  • Publication Date: 2023
  • Doi Number: 10.1007/s10943-023-01782-y
  • Journal Name: Journal of Religion and Health
  • Journal Indexes: Arts and Humanities Citation Index (AHCI), Social Sciences Citation Index (SSCI), Scopus, Academic Search Premier, IBZ Online, Periodicals Index Online, ATLA Religion Database, CINAHL, Index Islamicus, Psycinfo
  • Page Numbers: pp.3230-3251
  • Keywords: Attitude, Religious belief, Surrogacy
  • Hakkari University Affiliated: Yes


Individuals may develop different attitudes on bioethics in general and reproductive ethics in particular, due to the effects of different sociocultural environments. Individuals' attitudes toward surrogacy are affected positively or negatively depending on religious and cultural environments. This study was conducted to determine and compare the attitudes of different religions toward surrogacy. This study is cross-sectional and collected from individuals living in Turkey, India, Iran, the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus, Madagascar, Nepal, Nigeria, Pakistan, Mexico, England, and Japan between May 2022 and December 2022. The study was conducted with individuals belonging to Islam, Christianity, Hinduism, Buddhism, and Atheism. The study was conducted with 1177 individuals from different religions who agreed to participate in the study by snowball sampling method. The introductory Information Form and "Attitude Questionnaire Toward Surrogacy" were used as data collection tools. R programming language 4.1.3 was used for regression analysis with machine learning approach and artificial neural networks, and SPSS-25 was used for other statistical analyses. There was a significant difference between the total mean score of the individuals' Attitudes toward Surrogacy Questionnaire and their religious beliefs (p < 0.05). When the results of the analysis of the regression model with the dummy variable, which was carried out with the aim of revealing the effects of religious belief on the attitude toward surrogacy, are examined, statistical estimates of the regression model show that the model is significant and usable F(4,1172) = 5.005, p = 0.001). It explains 1.7% of the total variance of the level of religious belief's attitude toward surrogacy. In the regression model, when the t-test results regarding the significance of the regression coefficient are examined, among the participants, it was determined that the mean score of those who believed in Islam (t = − 3.827, p < 0.001) and those who believed in Christianity (t = − 2.548, p < 0.001) was lower than the mean score of those who believed in Hinduism (Constant) (p < 0.05). Individuals' attitudes toward surrogacy differ according to their religion. The best performing algorithm for the prediction model was random forest (RF) regression. The contributions of the variables to the model were calculated with Shapley values (Shapley Additive Explanations (SHAP)). The SHAP values of the variables in the best performing model were examined to avoid bias in terms of comparison in the performance criterion. SHAP values (Shapley Additive Explanations) show the contribution or importance of each variable in the estimation of the model. It is determined that the most important variable that should be in the model to predict the Attitude Toward Surrogacy Survey variable is the Nationality variable. It is recommended that studies on attitudes toward surrogacy should be conducted by taking religious and cultural values into consideration.