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Employment, Family Union, and Childbearing Decisions in Great Britain

Author

Listed:
  • Arnstein Aassve
  • Simon Burgess
  • Matt Dickson
  • Carol Propper

Abstract

The paper investigates the relationship between work and family life in Britain. Using appropriate statistical techniques we estimate a five-equation model, which includes birth events, union formation, union dissolution, employment and non-employment events. The model allows for unobserved heterogeneity that is correlated across all five equations. We use information from the British Household Panel Survey, including the retrospective histories concerning work, union, and child bearing, to estimate this model. We obtain well-defined parameter estimates, including significant and correlated unobserved heterogeneity. We find that transitions in and out of employment for men are relatively independent of other transitions. In contrast, there are strong links between female employment, having children and union formation. By undertaking a detailed micro simulations analysis, we show that different levels of female labour force participation do not necessarily lead to large changes in fertility levels. Changes in union formation and fertility levels, on the other hand, do have a significant impact on employment rates.

Suggested Citation

  • Arnstein Aassve & Simon Burgess & Matt Dickson & Carol Propper, 2004. "Employment, Family Union, and Childbearing Decisions in Great Britain," CASE Papers 084, Centre for Analysis of Social Exclusion, LSE.
  • Handle: RePEc:cep:sticas:084
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    demographic transitions; marriage; divorce; birth; employment;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • 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
    • J22 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Time Allocation and Labor Supply

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