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The Quiet Revolution and the Family: Gender Composition of Tertiary Education and Early Fertility Patterns

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  • Bicakova, Alena

    ()
    (CERGE-EI)

  • Jurajda, Štepán

    ()
    (CERGE-EI)

Abstract

It is well known that highly 'female' fields of study in tertiary education are characterized by higher fertility. However, existing work does not disentangle the selection-causality nexus. We use variation in gender composition of fields of study implied by the recent expansion of tertiary education in 19 European countries and a difference-in-differences research design, to show that the share of women on study peer groups affects early fertility levels only little. Early fertility by endogamous couples, i.e., by tertiary graduates from the same field of study, declines for women and increases for men with the share of women in the group, but non-endogamous fertility almost fully compensates for these effects, consistent with higher early fertility in highly 'female' fields of study being driven by selection of family-oriented students into these fields. We also show that the EU-wide level of gender segregation across fields of study has not changed since 2000.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 7965.

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Length: 40 pages
Date of creation: Feb 2014
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp7965

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Keywords: field-of-study gender segregation; tertiary graduates; fertility;

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  1. Michael Baker & Nicole M. Fortin, 2000. "Occupational Gender Composition and Wages in Canada: 1987-1988," Working Papers baker-00-01, University of Toronto, Department of Economics.
  2. Peter Arcidiacono & Esteban Aucejo & Andrew Hussey & Kenneth Spenner, 2013. "Racial Segregation Patterns in Selective Universities," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 56(4), pages 1039 - 1060.
  3. Jeremy Greenwood & Nezih Guner & Georgi Kocharkov & Cezar Santos, 2014. "Marry Your Like: Assortative Mating and Income Inequality," Working Papers 748, Barcelona Graduate School of Economics.
  4. Becker, Gary S, 1973. "A Theory of Marriage: Part I," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 81(4), pages 813-46, July-Aug..
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  6. Fang (Annie) Yang & Suqin Ge, 2008. "Accounting for the Gender Gap in College Attainment," Discussion Papers 08-02, University at Albany, SUNY, Department of Economics.
  7. Beffy, Magali & Fougère, Denis & Maurel, Arnaud, 2009. "Choosing the Field of Study in Post-Secondary Education: Do Expected Earnings Matter?," IZA Discussion Papers 4127, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  8. Suqin Ge, 2011. "Women’s College Decisions: How Much Does Marriage Matter?," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 29(4), pages 773 - 818.
  9. Gustaf Bruze, 2011. "Marriage Choices of Movie Stars: Does Spouse’s Education Matter?," Journal of Human Capital, University of Chicago Press, vol. 5(1), pages 1 - 28.
  10. Christian Bredemeier & Falko Juessen, 2013. "Assortative Mating and Female Labor Supply," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 31(3), pages 603 - 631.
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