The Impact of Child and Maternal Health Indicators on Female Labor Force Participation after Childbirth: Evidence for Germany
AbstractThis paper analyzes the influence of children's health and mothers' physical and mental well-being on female labor force participation after childbirth in Germany. Our analysis uses data from the German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP) study, which enables us to measure chil-dren's health based on the occurrence of severe health problems including mental and physi-cal disabilities, hospitalizations, and preterm births. Since child health is measured at a very young age, we can rule out any of the reverse effects of maternal employment on child health identified in US studies. Within a two-year time period, we investigate the influence of these indicators on various aspects of female labor force participation after childbirth, including continuous labor force participation in the year of childbirth and the transition to employment in the year following childbirth. Since the majority of women in Germany do not go back to work within a year after childbirth, we also investigate their intention to return to work, and the preferred number of working hours. We find that the child's severe health problems have a significant negative effect on the mothers' labor force participation and a significant positive effect on her preferred number of working hours, but that hospitalizations or preterm births have no significant effect. For the mothers' own health, we find a significant negative effect of poor mental and physical wellbeing on female labor force participation within a year of child-birth. To our knowledge, this is the first empirical study of this kind on data outside the US.
Download InfoIf 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.
Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research in its series Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin with number 686.
Length: 22 p.
Date of creation: 2007
Date of revision:
Publication status: Published in: Journal of Comparative Family Studies 40 (2009), Iss.1, 119-138
Female labour supply; childhealth; well-being;
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- J22 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Time Allocation and Labor Supply
- J23 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Labor Demand
- I19 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Other
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
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.:
- Barbara L. Wolfe & Steven C. Hill, 1995. "The Effect of Health on the Work Effort of Single Mothers," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 30(1), pages 42-62.
- Marcus Tamm, 2005. "The Effect of Poverty on the Health of Newborn Children – Evidence from Germany," RWI Discussion Papers 0033, Rheinisch-Westfälisches Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung.
- B. Wolfe & S. C. Hill, . "The effect of health on the work effort of low-income single mothers," Institute for Research on Poverty Discussion Papers 979-92, University of Wisconsin Institute for Research on Poverty.
- David S. Salkever, 1982. "Children's Health Problems: Implications for Parental Labor Supply and Earnings," NBER Chapters, in: Economic Aspects of Health, pages 221-252 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Bibliothek).
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.