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European Mothers' Time with Children: Differences and Similarities across Nine Countries

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  • Jutta M. Joesch
  • C. Katharina Spiess

Abstract

We use data from the 1996 wave of the European Community Household Panel to present and compare the weekly number of hours mothers of children less than 16 years of age reported looking after children in nine European countries in 1996. In addition, we explore to what extent cross-country differences in socio-demographic characteristics and parents' employment status contribute to differences in maternal time with children across the nine countries. We find cross-country differences in the mean of the amount of time mothers reported looking after children. Only a small portion of these differences is explained by differences in socio-demographic characteristics and employment status across countries in Europe. For three country pairs, we use a Oaxaca decomposition to investigate whether behaviour differences or differences in sample characteristics explain more of the observed differences in mothers' time looking after children. According to our results, the differences between Ireland and the UK can be explained mainly by behaviour differences. The results for Germany vs. Austria and Denmark vs. Greece, however, depend on the weights used.

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File URL: http://www.diw.de/documents/publikationen/73/diw_01.c.38510.de/dp305.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research in its series Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin with number 305.

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Length: 34 p.
Date of creation: 2002
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:diw:diwwpp:dp305

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  1. Charles Michalopoulos & Philip K. Robins & Irwin Garfinkel, 1992. "A Structural Model of Labor Supply and Child Care Demand," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 27(1), pages 166-203.
  2. Mroz, Thomas A, 1987. "The Sensitivity of an Empirical Model of Married Women's Hours of Work to Economic and Statistical Assumptions," Econometrica, Econometric Society, Econometric Society, vol. 55(4), pages 765-99, July.
  3. Jenkins, Stephen P & O'Leary, Nigel C, 1995. "Modelling Domestic Work Time," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, Springer, vol. 8(3), pages 265-79, August.
  4. Charles Michalopoulos & Philip K. Robins, 2000. "Employment and child-care choices in Canada and the United States," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 33(2), pages 435-470, May.
  5. Miller, Paul & Mulvey, Charles, 2000. "Women's Time Allocation to Child Care: Determinants and Consequences," Australian Economic Papers, Wiley Blackwell, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 39(1), pages 1-24, March.
  6. Jonathan Gershuny & John Robinson, 1988. "Historical changes in the household division of labor," Demography, Springer, Springer, vol. 25(4), pages 537-552, November.
  7. Alfonso Sousa-Poza & Hans Schmid & Rolf Widmer, 2001. "The allocation and value of time assigned to housework and child-care: An analysis for Switzerland," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, Springer, vol. 14(4), pages 599-618.
  8. Gustafsson, Bjorn & Kjulin, Urban, 1994. "Time Use in Child Care and Housework and the Total Cost of Children," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, Springer, vol. 7(3), pages 287-306, July.
  9. Juster, F Thomas & Stafford, Frank P, 1991. "The Allocation of Time: Empirical Findings, Behavioral Models, and Problems of Measurement," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 29(2), pages 471-522, June.
  10. Tim Barmby & Nina Smith, 2001. "Household labour supply in Britain and Denmark: some interpretations using a model of Pareto Optimal behaviour," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 33(9), pages 1109-1116.
  11. Suzanne Bianchi, 2000. "Maternal employment and time with children: Dramatic change or surprising continuity?," Demography, Springer, Springer, vol. 37(4), pages 401-414, November.
  12. David M. Blau & Alison P. Hagy, 1998. "The Demand for Quality in Child Care," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, University of Chicago Press, vol. 106(1), pages 104-146, February.
  13. Leibowitz, Arleen, 1974. "Education and Home Production," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, American Economic Association, vol. 64(2), pages 243-50, May.
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Cited by:
  1. Jonathan Guryan & Erik Hurst & Melissa Schettini Kearney, 2008. "Parental Education and Parental Time With Children," NBER Working Papers 13993, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Gimenez-Nadal, Jose Ignacio & Marcén, Miriam & Molina, José Alberto, 2007. "How Does the Presence of Children Affect Dependent Care? A Psycho-Economic Approach," IZA Discussion Papers 2726, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).

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