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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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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Heckman, James & Singer, Burton, 1984. "A Method for Minimizing the Impact of Distributional Assumptions in Econometric Models for Duration Data," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 52(2), pages 271-320, March.
    2. Michael J. Brien, 1997. "Racial Differences in Marriage and the Role of Marriage Markets," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 32(4), pages 741-778.
    3. Arnstein Aassve & Simon Burgess & Andrew Chesher & Carol Propper, 2002. "Transitions from home to marriage of young Americans," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 17(1), pages 1-23.
    4. Arnstein Aassve, 2003. "The impact of economic resources on premarital childbearing and subsequent marriage among young American women," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 40(1), pages 105-126, February.
    5. Michael J. Brien & Lee A. Hillard & Linda Waite, "undated". "Cohabitation, Marriage, and Non-Fertility," University of Chicago - Population Research Center 97-5, Chicago - Population Research Center.
    6. Wolfe, Barbara & Wilson, Kathryn & Haveman, Robert, 2001. "The role of economic incentives in teenage nonmarital childbearing choices," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 81(3), pages 473-511, September.
    7. Lee Lillard & Linda Waite, 1993. "A joint model of marital childbearing and marital disruption," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 30(4), pages 653-681, November.
    8. Lillard, Lee A., 1993. "Simultaneous equations for hazards : Marriage duration and fertility timing," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 56(1-2), pages 189-217, March.
    9. Robert J. Willis, 1999. "A Theory of Out-of-Wedlock Childbearing," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 107(S6), pages 33-64, December.
    10. Dawn Upchurch & Lee Lillard & Constantijn Panis, 2002. "Nonmarital childbearing: Influences of education, marriage, and fertility," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 39(2), pages 311-329, May.
    11. Newman, John L & McCulloch, Charles E, 1984. "A Hazard Rate Approach to the Timing of Births," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 52(4), pages 939-961, July.
    12. Pau Baizán & Arnstein Aassve & Francesco C. Billari, 2002. "Institutional arrangements and life course outcomes: the interrelations between cohabitation, marriage and first birth in Germany and Sweden," MPIDR Working Papers WP-2002-026, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany.
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    Cited by:

    1. Niedergesäss, Markus, 2013. "Employment, partnership and childbearing decisions of German women and men: A simultaneous hazards approach," University of Tuebingen Working Papers in Economics and Finance 51, University of Tuebingen, Faculty of Economics and Social Sciences.
    2. Arnstein Aassve & Simon Burgess & Matt Dickson & Carol Propper, 2005. "Modelling Poverty by not Modelling Poverty: An Application of a Simultaneous Hazards Approach to the UK," The Centre for Market and Public Organisation 05/134, Department of Economics, University of Bristol, UK.
    3. Thiel, Hendrik & Thomsen, Stephan L., 2015. "Individual Poverty Paths and the Stability of Control-Perception," IZA Discussion Papers 9334, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    4. Tiziana Leone & Andrew Hinde, 2007. "Fertility and union dissolution in Brazil: an example of multi-process modelling using the Demographic and Health Survey calendar data," Demographic Research, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany, vol. 17(7), pages 157-180, October.
    5. Eirini Andriopoulou & Panagiotis Tsakloglou, "undated". "The determinants of poverty transitions in Europe and the role of duration dependence," DEOS Working Papers 1119, Athens University of Economics and Business.
    6. Abbasoğlu Özgören, Ayşe & Ergöçmen, Banu & Tansel, Aysit, 2017. "Birth and Employment Transitions of Women in Turkey: Conflicting or Compatible Roles?," GLO Discussion Paper Series 161, Global Labor Organization (GLO).
    7. Leone, Tiziana & Hinde, Andrew, 2007. "Fertility and union dissolution in Brazil: an example of multi-process modelling using the Demographic and Health Survey calendar data," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 14701, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
    8. Nicoletta Balbo & Nicola Barban & Melinda Mills, 2013. "Friend and peer effects on entry into marriage and parenthood: A multiprocess approach," Working Papers 056, "Carlo F. Dondena" Centre for Research on Social Dynamics (DONDENA), Università Commerciale Luigi Bocconi.
    9. Anna Baranowska-Rataj & Anna Matysiak, 2016. "The Causal Effects of the Number of Children on Female Employment - Do European Institutional and Gender Conditions Matter?," Journal of Labor Research, Springer, vol. 37(3), pages 343-367, September.
    10. Helske, Satu & Steele, Fiona & Kokko, Katja & Räikkönen, Eija & Eerola, Mervi, 2015. "Partnership formation and dissolution over the life course: applying sequence analysis and event history analysis in the study of recurrent events," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 62244, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
    11. repec:dem:demres:v:37:y:2017:i:28 is not listed on IDEAS
    12. John Hobcraft, 2008. "The timing and partnership context of becoming a parent," Demographic Research, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany, vol. 19(34), pages 1281-1322, July.
    13. Biewen, Martin, 2004. "Measuring State Dependence in Individual Poverty Status: Are There Feedback Effects to Employment Decisions and Household Composition?," IZA Discussion Papers 1138, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    14. Elizabeth Thomson & Maria Winkler-Dworak & Martin Spielauer & Alexia Prskawetz, 2012. "Union Instability as an Engine of Fertility? A Microsimulation Model for France," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 49(1), pages 175-195, February.
    15. Fiona Steele & Constantinos Kallis & Harvey Goldstein & Heather Joshi, 2005. "The relationship between childbearing and transitions from marriage and cohabitation in Britain," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 42(4), pages 647-673, November.
    16. Anna Matysiak & Daniele Vignoli, 2011. "Different women’s employment and fertility behaviours in similar institutional settings: Evidence from Italy and Poland," Working Papers 41, Institute of Statistics and Demography, Warsaw School of Economics.
    17. Biewen, Martin & Seifert, Stefanie, 2016. "Potential Parenthood and Career Progression of Men and Women: A Simultaneous Hazards Approach," IZA Discussion Papers 10050, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).

    More about this item

    Keywords

    demographic transitions; marriage; divorce; birth; employment;

    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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