Advanced Search
MyIDEAS: Login to save this article or follow this journal

Reconciling Work, Family and Child Outcomes: What Implications for Family Support Policies?

Contents:

Author Info

  • Olivier Thévenon

    ()

  • Angela Luci

    ()

Abstract

This paper discusses the potential of family policies to reconcile the multiple objectives that they are expected to serve, over and above their role in offsetting the economic cost of children. We start by emphasizing the need to consider the multiple challenges that family policies in European Union—and/or OECD—countries have to address through a broadening of the standard economic approach to the cost of children. Policies indeed aim to reduce the “direct” monetary cost of raising children, but they also aim to minimise the indirect cost arising from the incidence of children on the parents’ work-life balance and on the aggregate level of employment. Moreover, motives for policy intervention such as concerns about child development, gender equity or aggregate fertility levels are not fully captured by cost measurements. We thus analyse how, and to what extent, family policies can successfully reconcile these multidimensional objectives. We offer a holistic approach, pointing out that a coherent family policy mix supporting working parents with preschool children is the only way to reconcile or limit the conflicts between work, family and child outcomes. Three main dichotomies are identified to explain cross-country differences in family policy packages: the emphasis on poverty alleviation; the supposed antagonism between fertility and female employment; and the potential conflict between this latter and child development. Ways to reconcile these objectives and to improve the effectiveness and efficiency of family policies are further discussed. Copyright Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2012

Download Info

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1007/s11113-012-9254-5
Download Restriction: Access to full text is restricted to subscribers.

As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.

Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Springer in its journal Population Research and Policy Review.

Volume (Year): 31 (2012)
Issue (Month): 6 (December)
Pages: 855-882

as in new window
Handle: RePEc:kap:poprpr:v:31:y:2012:i:6:p:855-882

Contact details of provider:
Web page: http://www.springerlink.com/link.asp?id=102983

Related research

Keywords: Family policy; Costs of children; Child poverty; Women’s labour market participation; Fertility; Work-life balance;

References

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
as in new window
  1. Jane Waldfogel & Wen-Jui Han & Jeanne Brooks-Gunn, 2002. "The effects of early maternal employment on child cognitive development," Demography, Springer, vol. 39(2), pages 369-392, May.
  2. Esping-Andersen, Gosta & Garfinkel, Irwin & Han, Wen-Jui & Magnuson, Katherine & Wagner, Sander & Waldfogel, Jane, 2012. "Child care and school performance in Denmark and the United States," Children and Youth Services Review, Elsevier, vol. 34(3), pages 576-589.
  3. Michael Baker & Jonathan Gruber & Kevin Milligan, 2006. "Universal Childcare, Maternal Labor Supply, and Family Well-Being," Working Papers id:547, eSocialSciences.
  4. Maria del Carmen Huerta & Willem Adema & Jennifer Baxter & Miles Corak & Mette Deding & Matthew C. Gray & Wen-Jui Han & Jane Waldfogel, 2011. "Early Maternal Employment and Child Development in Five OECD Countries," OECD Social, Employment and Migration Working Papers 118, OECD Publishing.
  5. Christopher J. Ruhm, 2000. "Parental Employment and Child Cognitive Development," NBER Working Papers 7666, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Wendy Sigle-Rushton & Jane Waldfogel, 2007. "Motherhood and women's earnings in Anglo-American, Continental European, and Nordic Countries," Feminist Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 13(2), pages 55-91.
  7. Browning, Martin, 1992. "Children and Household Economic Behavior," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 30(3), pages 1434-75, September.
  8. Janet Currie, 2001. "Early Childhood Education Programs," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 15(2), pages 213-238, Spring.
  9. Anxo, Dominique & Flood, Lennart & Mencarini, Letizia & Pailhé, Ariane & Solaz, Anne & Tanturri, Maria Letizia, 2007. "Time Allocation between Work and Family over the Life-Cycle: A Comparative Gender Analysis of Italy, France, Sweden and the United States," IZA Discussion Papers 3193, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  10. Dominique Meurs & Ariane Pailhé & Sophie Ponthieux, 2011. "Child-related career interruptions and the gender wage gap in France," EconomiX Working Papers 2011-3, University of Paris West - Nanterre la Défense, EconomiX.
  11. Jan Ondrich & Katharina C. Spieß & Qing Yang, 2002. "The Effect of Maternity Leave on Women's Pay in Germany 1984-1994," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 289, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
  12. Shelly J. Lundberg & Robert A. Pollak & Terence J. Wales, 1997. "Do Husbands and Wives Pool Their Resources? Evidence from the United Kingdom Child Benefit," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 32(3), pages 463-480.
  13. DeCicca, Philip & Smith, Justin, 2013. "The long-run impacts of early childhood education: Evidence from a failed policy experiment," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 36(C), pages 41-59.
  14. Charles L. Baum II, 2003. "Does Early Maternal Employment Harm Child Development? An Analysis of the Potential Benefits of Leave Taking," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 21(2), pages 381-408, April.
  15. Eugene Smolensky & Siobhán Reilly & Eirik Evenhouse, 1995. "Should Public Assistance Be Targeted?," Journal of Post Keynesian Economics, M.E. Sharpe, Inc., vol. 18(1), pages 3-28, October.
  16. Lyn Craig & Michael Bittman, 2008. "The incremental time costs of children: An analysis of children's impact on adult time use in Australia," Feminist Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 14(2), pages 59-88.
  17. Nelson, Julie A, 1993. "Household Equivalence Scales: Theory versus Policy?," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 11(3), pages 471-93, July.
  18. Goux, Dominique & Maurin, Eric, 2010. "Public school availability for two-year olds and mothers' labour supply," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 17(6), pages 951-962, December.
  19. Paul Gregg & Elizabeth Washbrook & Carol Propper & Simon Burgess, 2005. "The Effects of a Mother's Return to Work Decision on Child Development in the UK," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 115(501), pages F48-F80, 02.
  20. Anne Salles & Clémentine Rossier & Sara Brachet, 2010. "Understanding the long term effects of family policies on fertility: The diffusion of different family models in France and Germany," Demographic Research, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany, vol. 22(34), pages 1057-1096, June.
  21. Bruce Bradbury, 2008. "Time And The Cost Of Children," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 54(3), pages 305-323, 09.
  22. Pierre Lefebvre & Philip Merrigan & Francis Roy-Desrosiers, 2011. "Québec's Childcare Universal Low Fees Policy 10 Years After: Effects, Costs and Benefits," Cahiers de recherche 1101, CIRPEE.
  23. Davies, Rhys & Pierre, Gaelle, 2005. "The family gap in pay in Europe: a cross-country study," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 12(4), pages 469-486, August.
  24. Moffitt, Robert, 1983. "An Economic Model of Welfare Stigma," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 73(5), pages 1023-35, December.
  25. Veerle Miranda, 2011. "Cooking, Caring and Volunteering: Unpaid Work Around the World," OECD Social, Employment and Migration Working Papers 116, OECD Publishing.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

Citations

Lists

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

Statistics

Access and download statistics

Corrections

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:kap:poprpr:v:31:y:2012:i:6:p:855-882. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Guenther Eichhorn) or (Christopher F. Baum).

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.