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The Long Road to the Fast Track: Career and Family

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  • Claudia Goldin

Abstract

The career and family outcomes of college graduate women suggest that the twentieth century contained five distinct cohorts.' Each cohort made choices concerning career and family subject to different constraints. The first cohort, graduating college from the beginning of the twentieth century to the close of World War I, had either family or career.' The second, graduating college from around 1920 to the end of World War II, had job then family.' The third cohort the college graduate mothers of the baby boom' graduated college from around 1946 to the mid-1960s and had family then job.' The fourth cohort graduated college from the late 1960s to the late 1970s. Using the NLS Young Women I demonstrate that 13 to 18 percent achieved career then family' by age 40. The objective of the fifth cohort, graduating from around 1980 to 1990, has been career and family,' and 21 to 28 percent (using the NLS Youth) have realized that goal by age 40. I trace the demographic and labor force experiences of these five cohorts of college graduates and discuss why career and family' outcomes changed over time.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 10331.

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Date of creation: Mar 2004
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Publication status: published as Goldin, Claudia. “The Long Road to the Fast Track: Career and Family.” The Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science 596 (November 2004): 20-35.
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:10331

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  1. Claudia Goldin & Lawrence F. Katz, 2000. "The Power of the Pill: Oral Contraceptives and Women's Career and Marriage Decisions," NBER Working Papers 7527, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Claudia Goldin, 1993. "The Meaning of College in the Lives of American Women: The Past One-Hundred Years," Working Papers 899, Queen's University, Department of Economics.
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Cited by:
  1. Stephen Pudney & Nikolaos Theodoropoulos, 2006. "Firm-Specific Gender and Ethnicity Pay Differentials in Britain," University of Cyprus Working Papers in Economics 9-2006, University of Cyprus Department of Economics.
  2. Henrekson, Magnus & Dreber, Anna, 2004. "Female Career Success: Institutions, Path Dependence and Psychology," Working Paper Series in Economics and Finance 574, Stockholm School of Economics, revised 27 Jan 2005.
  3. Euwals, Rob & Knoef, Marike & van Vuuren, Daniel, 2007. "The Trend in Female Labour Force Participation: What Can Be Expected for the Future?," IZA Discussion Papers 3225, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  4. Whitney Schott, 2012. "Going Back Part-time: Family Leave Legislation and Women’s Return to Work," Population Research and Policy Review, Springer, vol. 31(1), pages 1-30, February.
  5. Jan Van Bavel, 2014. "The mid-twentieth century Baby Boom and the changing educational gradient in Belgian cohort fertility," Demographic Research, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany, vol. 30(33), pages 925-962, March.
  6. Robert C. Feenstra & Chang Hong, 2010. "China's Exports and Employment," NBER Chapters, in: China's Growing Role in World Trade, pages 167-199 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Elizabeth Oltmans Ananat & Daniel M. Hungerman, 2007. "The Power of the Pill for the Next Generation," NBER Working Papers 13402, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Robert C. Feenstra & Shang-Jin Wei, 2010. "Introduction to "China's Growing Role in World Trade"," NBER Chapters, in: China's Growing Role in World Trade, pages 1-31 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Paula Stephan & Sharon Levin, 2005. "Leaving Careers in IT: Gender Differences in Retention," The Journal of Technology Transfer, Springer, vol. 30(4), pages 383-396, October.
  10. Dessy, Sylvain & Djebbari, Habiba, 2005. "Career Choice, Marriage-Timing, and the Attraction of Unequals," IZA Discussion Papers 1561, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  11. Martha J. Bailey & Melanie Guldi & Brad J. Hershbein, 2013. "Is There a Case for a "Second Demographic Transition"? Three Distinctive Features of the Post-1960 U.S. Fertility Decline," NBER Chapters, in: Human Capital in History: The American Record National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. Martha J. Bailey & Brad Hershbein & Amalia R. Miller, 2012. "The Opt-In Revolution? Contraception and the Gender Gap in Wages," NBER Working Papers 17922, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  13. Bas ter Weel & Lex Borghans & Bruce A. Weinberg, 2013. "People Skills and the Labor-Market Outcomes of Underrepresented Groups," CPB Discussion Paper 253, CPB Netherlands Bureau for Economic Policy Analysis.

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