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Globalization, Gender, and the Family

Author

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  • Keller, Wolfgang
  • Utar, Hale

Abstract

This paper shows that globalization has far-reaching implications for the economy's fertility rate and family structure because they influence work-life balance. Employing population register data on new births, marriages, and divorces together with employer-employee linked data for Denmark, we show that lower labor market opportunities due to Chinese import competition lead to a shift towards family, with more parental leave taking and higher fertility as well as more marriages and fewer divorces. This pro-family, pro-child shift is driven largely by women, not men. Correspondingly, the negative earnings implications of the rising import competition are concentrated on women, and gender earnings inequality increases. We show that the choice of market versus family is a major determinant of worker adjustment costs to labor market shocks. While older workers respond to the shock rather similarly whether female or not, for young workers the fertility response takes away the adjustment advantage they typically have-if the worker is a woman. We find that the female biological clock-women have difficulties to conceive beyond their early forties-is central for the gender differential, rather than the composition of jobs and workplaces, as well as other potential causes.

Suggested Citation

  • Keller, Wolfgang & Utar, Hale, 2018. "Globalization, Gender, and the Family," CEPR Discussion Papers 13317, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  • Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:13317
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. repec:pal:imfecr:v:66:y:2018:i:4:d:10.1057_s41308-018-0065-5 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Krisztina Kis-Katos & Janneke Pieters & Robert Sparrow, 2018. "Globalization and Social Change: Gender-Specific Effects of Trade Liberalization in Indonesia," IMF Economic Review, Palgrave Macmillan;International Monetary Fund, vol. 66(4), pages 763-793, December.
    3. repec:eee:eecrev:v:111:y:2019:i:c:p:305-335 is not listed on IDEAS

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Divorce; Earnings Inequality; Fertility; Gender Gap; import competition; Marriage;

    JEL classification:

    • F16 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Trade and Labor Market Interactions
    • F66 - International Economics - - Economic Impacts of Globalization - - - Labor
    • 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
    • J16 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Gender; Non-labor Discrimination

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