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Educational attainment and first births: East Germany before and after unification

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  • Michaela Kreyenfeld

    (Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany)

Abstract

There is a general belief that female educational attainment has a delaying effect on the age at first birth. In this paper we argue that the validity of this hypothesis relies on at least three prerequisites. First, that child rearing and employment is incompatible. Second, that a withdrawal from the labor market harms labor market upward mobility. Third, that child rearing responsibilities are shared according to traditional gender roles. Using data from the German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP), we analyze the impact of educational attainment on first birth risks in East and West Germany before and after unification. A major result is that, compared to West Germany, the impact of educational attainment on first birth risks is less strong in East Germany. This also applies to the period after unification. We attribute this to the relative abundance of public day care in the East. (AUTHOR)

Suggested Citation

  • Michaela Kreyenfeld, 2000. "Educational attainment and first births: East Germany before and after unification," MPIDR Working Papers WP-2000-011, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany.
  • Handle: RePEc:dem:wpaper:wp-2000-011
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    File URL: http://www.demogr.mpg.de/Papers/Working/wp-2000-011.pdf
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    Cited by:

    1. Sumon Kumar Bhaumik & Jeffrey B. Nugent, 2002. "Does Economic Uncertainty Have an Impact on Decisions to Bear Children? Evidence from Eastern Germany," William Davidson Institute Working Papers Series 491, William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan.
    2. Julia Bredtmann & Jochen Kluve & Sandra Schaffner, 2013. "Mothers' Transitions into the Labor Market under Two Political Systems: Comparing East and West Germany before Reunification," Schmollers Jahrbuch : Journal of Applied Social Science Studies / Zeitschrift für Wirtschafts- und Sozialwissenschaften, Duncker & Humblot, Berlin, vol. 133(3), pages 375-408.
    3. Katrin Sommerfeld, 2009. "Older Babies - More Active Mothers? How Maternal Labor Supply Changes as the Child Grows," Schmollers Jahrbuch : Journal of Applied Social Science Studies / Zeitschrift für Wirtschafts- und Sozialwissenschaften, Duncker & Humblot, Berlin, vol. 129(2), pages 227-240.
    4. repec:zbw:rwirep:0149 is not listed on IDEAS
    5. Karel Neels & Zita Theunynck & Jonas Wood, 2013. "Economic recession and first births in Europe: recession-induced postponement and recuperation of fertility in 14 European countries between 1970 and 2005," International Journal of Public Health, Springer;Swiss School of Public Health (SSPH+), vol. 58(1), pages 43-55, February.
    6. Kryštof Zeman, 2007. "Transition of nuptiality and fertility onset in the Czech Republic since the 1990s: the role of women’s education and its expansion," MPIDR Working Papers WP-2007-017, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany.
    7. Karel Neels & David De Wachter, 2010. "Postponement and recuperation of Belgian fertility: how are they related to rising female educational attainment?," Vienna Yearbook of Population Research, Vienna Institute of Demography (VID) of the Austrian Academy of Sciences in Vienna, vol. 8(1), pages 77-106.
    8. Suzana Koelet & Helga A.G. De Valk & Ignace Glorieux & Ilse Laurijssen & Didier Willaert, 2015. "The timing of family commitments in the early work career," Demographic Research, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany, vol. 32(22), pages 657-690, March.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • J1 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics
    • Z0 - Other Special Topics - - General

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