The Changing Institutional Context of Low Fertility

The Changing Institutional Context of Low Fertility Using data for 1960–97 for 22 low fertility countries, we document a dramatic change in the association of fertility levels to women's levels of labor force participation. Until the 1980s, this association had been strongly negative. However, during the 1980s itbecame positive, and since 1990 strongly positive. We also document an emerging positive association of the country-level total fertility ratio (TFR) and nonmarital ratio (e.g., the proportion of births to unmarried women). We argue that these transformed associations reflect societal level responses that, in some contexts, have eased the incompatibility between mother and worker roles, and loosened the link betweenmarriage and childbearing. These arguments imply that societal responses to mother/worker incompatibility exert substantial influence on fertility levels in low fertility countries. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Population Research and Policy Review Springer Journals

The Changing Institutional Context of Low Fertility

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Publisher
Kluwer Academic Publishers
Copyright
Copyright © 2003 by Kluwer Academic Publishers
Subject
Geography; Demography; Economic Policy; Population Economics
ISSN
0167-5923
eISSN
1573-7829
D.O.I.
10.1023/B:POPU.0000020877.96401.b3
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Using data for 1960–97 for 22 low fertility countries, we document a dramatic change in the association of fertility levels to women's levels of labor force participation. Until the 1980s, this association had been strongly negative. However, during the 1980s itbecame positive, and since 1990 strongly positive. We also document an emerging positive association of the country-level total fertility ratio (TFR) and nonmarital ratio (e.g., the proportion of births to unmarried women). We argue that these transformed associations reflect societal level responses that, in some contexts, have eased the incompatibility between mother and worker roles, and loosened the link betweenmarriage and childbearing. These arguments imply that societal responses to mother/worker incompatibility exert substantial influence on fertility levels in low fertility countries.

Journal

Population Research and Policy ReviewSpringer Journals

Published: Oct 17, 2004

References

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