Changing relationships between education and fertility – a study of women and men born 1940-64
AbstractSurprisingly, relatively little is known about the relationship between education and completed fertility in low fertility countries and especially the trend in this relationship over time. An inverse relationship is expected, but the topic has been left largely unexplored for at least a generation, and for men the topic is almost completely unexplored empirically. In this paper, we use data from the population registers covering all Norwegians born 1940-64. Among women, the relationship between completed fertility and the educational level attained at age 39 has become substantially less negative. In all the cohorts, better educated women have more often remained childless than the less educated, and they have had later first births, which also contributes to lower subsequent fertility. However, the negative effect of education on higher-order birth rates net of this impact of later motherhood has disappeared in the younger cohorts. Family-friendly policies and ideologies, leading, for example, to better access to high-quality day care, are likely the main engine behind this shift. Among men, a positive relationship has emerged. The better educated become fathers later than others, but fewer remain childless, and there has been an increasingly stimulating effect of education on second- and third-birth rates. We discuss these sex differences in the light of the persistent differences between mother and father roles.
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 Oslo University, Department of Economics in its series Memorandum with number 11/2007.
Length: 52 pages
Date of creation: 01 Jul 2007
Date of revision:
Contact details of provider:
Postal: Department of Economics, University of Oslo, P.O Box 1095 Blindern, N-0317 Oslo, Norway
Phone: 22 85 51 27
Fax: 22 85 50 35
Web page: http://www.oekonomi.uio.no/indexe.html
More information through EDIRC
Education; fertililty; gender;
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- A10 - General Economics and Teaching - - General Economics - - - General
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.:
- Vegard Skirbekk & Hans-Peter Kohler & Alexia Prskawetz, 2004. "Birth month, school graduation, and the timing of births and marriages," Demography, Springer, vol. 41(3), pages 547-568, August.
- Gary S. Becker & Nigel Tomes, 1976.
"Child Endowments, and the Quantity and Quality of Children,"
NBER Working Papers
0123, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Becker, Gary S & Tomes, Nigel, 1976. "Child Endowments and the Quantity and Quality of Children," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 84(4), pages S143-62, August.
- Hans-Peter Kohler & Francesco C. Billari & José Antonio Ortega, 2002. "The Emergence of Lowest-Low Fertility in Europe During the 1990s," Population and Development Review, The Population Council, Inc., vol. 28(4), pages 641-680.
- Martin Dribe & Maria Stanfors, 2009. "Education, Work and Parenthood: Comparing the Experience of Young Men and Women in Sweden," Journal of Family and Economic Issues, Springer, vol. 30(1), pages 32-42, March.
- Arendt, Jacob Nielsen, 2005. "Does education cause better health? A panel data analysis using school reforms for identification," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 24(2), pages 149-160, April.
- Jan M. Hoem & Alexia Prskawetz & Gerda R. Neyer, 2001. "Autonomy or conservative adjustment? The effect of public policies and educational attainment on third births in Austria," MPIDR Working Papers WP-2001-016, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany.
- Øystein Kravdal, 2002. "Is the Previously Reported Increase in Second- and Higher-order Birth Rates in Norway and Sweden from the mid-1970s Real or a Result of Inadequate Estimation Methods?," Demographic Research, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany, vol. 6(9), pages 241-262, March.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Rhiana Bergh-Seeley).
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.