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How Distance to a Non-Residential Parent Relates to Child Outcomes

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Listed:
  • Astrid Würtz Rasmussen

    () (Department of Economics and Business, Aarhus University, Denmark)

  • Leslie S. Stratton

    (Virginia Commonwealth University)

Abstract

Family courts now encourage both parents to maintain contact with their children following separation/divorce, driven by the belief that such contact benefits the child. We test this assumption with a population sample of children from nonnuclear families in Denmark, using distance between non-residential parents and their children to proxy for contact. The results indicate significantly better educational and behavioral outcomes for children at a greater distance. Failing to control for endogeneity biases the results in favor of more proximate parents. These findings suggest that policy efforts to keep separated parents geographically closer for their children’s sake may not be advantageous.

Suggested Citation

  • Astrid Würtz Rasmussen & Leslie S. Stratton, 2012. "How Distance to a Non-Residential Parent Relates to Child Outcomes," Economics Working Papers 2012-23, Department of Economics and Business Economics, Aarhus University.
  • Handle: RePEc:aah:aarhec:2012-23
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Corak, Miles, 2001. "Death and Divorce: The Long-Term Consequences of Parental Loss on Adolescents," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 19(3), pages 682-715, July.
    2. Ariel Kalil & Magne Mogstad & Mari Rege & Mark Votruba, 2011. "Divorced Fathers’ Proximity and Children’s Long-Run Outcomes: Evidence From Norwegian Registry Data," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 48(3), pages 1005-1027, August.
    3. Maria Cancian & Daniel Meyer, 1998. "Who gets custody?," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 35(2), pages 147-157, May.
    4. Sandra Hofferth, 2006. "Residential father family type and child well-being: Investment versus selection," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 43(1), pages 53-77, February.
    5. Heather Antecol & Kelly Bedard, 2007. "Does single parenthood increase the probability of teenage promiscuity, substance use, and crime?," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 20(1), pages 55-71, February.
    6. Joseph Price, 2008. "Parent-Child Quality Time: Does Birth Order Matter?," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 43(1).
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Child outcomes; parental separation; distance;

    JEL classification:

    • D13 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Household Production and Intrahouse Allocation
    • I12 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Health Behavior
    • I21 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Analysis of Education
    • J12 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Marriage; Marital Dissolution; Family Structure
    • J13 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Fertility; Family Planning; Child Care; Children; Youth

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