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Social capital related to fertility: theoretical foundations and empirical evidence from Bulgaria

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  • Christoph Bühler

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

  • Dimiter Philipov

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

Abstract

Interpersonal relationships of support have been found to be an important factor in individual fertility intentions in Central and Eastern European countries. The foundations of this positive influence have not been well explored to date, however. We present a theoretical discussion on exchange-based social capital and argue that processes of interpersonal exchange are relevant for reproductive decisions when they provide access to resources that help to reduce the costs of having children and stabilize the economic situation of a household. Data from 2002 on the fertility intentions of 2,016 Bulgarian women support our argument. The availability of important and substantive resources has a positive impact on women’s intentions to have a second or third child and their timing of having a first or second child. The embededness in kin-based exchange systems of indirect reciprocity shows similar positive effects and highlights especially the significance of parents as a source of intergenerational transfers and support.

Suggested Citation

  • Christoph Bühler & Dimiter Philipov, 2005. "Social capital related to fertility: theoretical foundations and empirical evidence from Bulgaria," MPIDR Working Papers WP-2005-016, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany.
  • Handle: RePEc:dem:wpaper:wp-2005-016
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Elena Koytcheva & Dimiter Philipov, 2008. "Bulgaria: Ethnic differentials in rapidly declining fertility," Demographic Research, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany, vol. 19(13), pages 361-402, July.
    2. Sunnee Billingsley, 2010. "The Post-Communist Fertility Puzzle," Population Research and Policy Review, Springer;Southern Demographic Association (SDA), vol. 29(2), pages 193-231, April.
    3. repec:dem:demres:v:36:y:2017:i:62 is not listed on IDEAS
    4. YOUM Yoosik, 2011. "A Network Approach to the Economic Models of Fertility," Discussion papers 11062, Research Institute of Economy, Trade and Industry (RIETI).
    5. Soo-Yeon Yoon, 2017. "The influence of a supportive environment for families on women’s fertility intentions and behavior in South Korea," Demographic Research, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany, vol. 36(7), pages 227-254, January.
    6. Nick Parr, 2010. "Satisfaction with life as an antecedent of fertility," Demographic Research, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany, vol. 22(21), pages 635-662, April.
    7. Christoph Bühler, 2006. "On the structural value of children and its implication on intended fertility in Bulgaria," MPIDR Working Papers WP-2006-003, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany.
    8. Abhishek Kumar & Valeria Bordone & Raya Muttarak, 2016. "Like Mother(-in-Law) Like Daughter? Influence of the Older Generation’s Fertility Behaviours on Women’s Desired Family Size in Bihar, India," European Journal of Population, Springer;European Association for Population Studies, vol. 32(5), pages 629-660, December.
    9. Lareen Newman, 2009. "Do Socioeconomic Differences in Family Size Reflect Cultural Differences in Confidence and Social Support for Parenting?," Population Research and Policy Review, Springer;Southern Demographic Association (SDA), vol. 28(5), pages 661-691, October.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Bulgaria; fertility determinants; social capital;

    JEL classification:

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

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