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The effect of education on fertility: Evidence from a compulsory schooling reform

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  • Cygan-Rehm, Kamila
  • Maeder, Miriam

Abstract

This paper investigates the effect of education on fertility under inflexible labor market conditions. We exploit exogenous variation from a German compulsory schooling reform to deal with the endogeneity of education. By using data from two complementary datasets, we examine different fertility outcomes over the life cycle. In contrast to evidence for other developed countries, we find that increased education causally reduces completed fertility. This negative effect operates through a postponement of first births away from teenage years and no catch-up later in life. We attribute these findings to the particularly high opportunity costs of childrearing in Germany.

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  • Cygan-Rehm, Kamila & Maeder, Miriam, 2013. "The effect of education on fertility: Evidence from a compulsory schooling reform," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 25(C), pages 35-48.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:labeco:v:25:y:2013:i:c:p:35-48 DOI: 10.1016/j.labeco.2013.04.015
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    Cited by:

    1. Murat G. Kýrdar & Meltem Dayýoglu Tayfur & Ýsmet Koç, 2010. "The Effect of Compulsory Schooling Laws on Teenage Marriage and Births in Turkey," Koç University-TUSIAD Economic Research Forum Working Papers 1035, Koc University-TUSIAD Economic Research Forum.
    2. Nicholas Kofi Adjei & Sunnee Billingsley, 2017. "Childbearing Behavior Before and After the 1994 Population Policies in Ghana," Population Research and Policy Review, Springer;Southern Demographic Association (SDA), vol. 36(2), pages 251-271, April.
    3. Mevlude Akbulut-Yuksel & Mutlu Yuksel, 2015. "The Long-Term Direct and External Effects of Jewish Expulsions in Nazi Germany," American Economic Journal: Economic Policy, American Economic Association, vol. 7(3), pages 58-85, August.
    4. Murat G. Kýrdar & Meltem Dayýoðlu & Ýsmet Koç, 2016. "The Effects of Compulsory Schooling Laws on Teenage Marriage and Births in Turkey," Working Papers 2016/01, Bogazici University, Department of Economics.
    5. Güneş Pınar Mine, 2016. "The Impact of Female Education on Teenage Fertility: Evidence from Turkey," The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy, De Gruyter, vol. 16(1), pages 259-288, January.
    6. Cristina Belles-Obrero & Sergi Jiménez-Martín & Judit Vall-Castello, 2015. "The Unintended Effects of Increasing the Legal Working Age on Family Behaviour”," Working Papers 2015-09, FEDEA.
    7. Naci Mocan & Luiza Pogorelova, 2014. "Compulsory Schooling Laws and Formation of Beliefs: Education, Religion and Superstition," Koç University-TUSIAD Economic Research Forum Working Papers 1423, Koc University-TUSIAD Economic Research Forum.
    8. repec:spr:izamig:v:7:y:2017:i:1:d:10.1186_s40176-017-0100-8 is not listed on IDEAS
    9. Kramer, Anica & Tamm, Marcus, 2016. "Does Learning Beget Learning Throughout Adulthood? Evidence from Employees' Training Participation," IZA Discussion Papers 9959, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    10. Poh Lin Tan, 2017. "The impact of school entry laws on female education and teenage fertility," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 30(2), pages 503-536, April.
    11. Mocan, Naci & Pogorelova, Luiza, 2014. "Compulsory Schooling Laws and Formation of Beliefs: Education, Religion and Superstition," IZA Discussion Papers 8698, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    12. Naci Mocan & Luiza Pogorelova, 2014. "Compulsory Schooling Laws and Formation of Beliefs: Education, Religion and Superstition," NBER Working Papers 20557, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    13. Fischer, Martin & Karlsson, Martin & Nilsson, Therese & Schwarz, Nina, 2016. "The Sooner the Better? Compulsory Schooling Reforms in Sweden," IZA Discussion Papers 10430, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    14. Eschelbach Martina, 2015. "Family Culture and Fertility Outcomes – Evidence from American Siblings," Journal of Economics and Statistics (Jahrbuecher fuer Nationaloekonomie und Statistik), De Gruyter, vol. 235(3), pages 246-267, June.
    15. I-Chun Chen, 2016. "Parental Education and Fertility: An Empirical Investigation Based on Evidence from Taiwan," Journal of Family and Economic Issues, Springer, vol. 37(2), pages 272-284, June.
    16. Mathias Huebener, 2017. "Intergenerational Effects of Education on Risky Health Behaviours and Long-Term Health," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 1709, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
    17. Guldi, Melanie, 2016. "Title IX and the education of teen mothers," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 55(C), pages 103-116.
    18. Le Moglie, Marco & Mencarini, Letizia & Rapallini, Chiara, 2015. "Is it just a matter of personality? On the role of subjective well-being in childbearing behavior," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 117(C), pages 453-475.

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