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Shifting economic foundation of marriage in Japan: the erosion of traditional marriage

  • Setsuya Fukuda

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

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    Japan is one of few developed countries in which marriage and higher earning potential among women are negatively associated. As the proportion of births occurring outside of marriage remains low in Japan, fertility is still significantly influenced by marriage trends, which are in turn influenced by societal expectations regarding the marriageability of educated women. Previous studies have suggested that the economic independence associated with higher education is at the root of this negative relationship, but how persistent will this relationship prove to be? As women’s education rapidly catches up with men’s, there is reason to suspect that marriage trends are also in transition. This study examines the latest marriage-related behavior patterns among Japanese women from 2002 onward, focusing on the relationship between women’s economic emancipation and marriage in a gender-traditional society. Using a newly available large panel survey on young adults in Japan, it will demonstrate that the effects of women’s education have reversed, and are now in fact positive.

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    File URL: http://www.demogr.mpg.de/papers/working/wp-2009-033.pdf
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    Paper provided by Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany in its series MPIDR Working Papers with number WP-2009-033.

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    Length: 26 pages
    Date of creation: Nov 2009
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:dem:wpaper:wp-2009-033
    Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.demogr.mpg.de/

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    1. Robert D. Retherford & Naohiro Ogawa & Rikiya Matsukura, 2001. "Late Marriage and Less Marriage in Japan," Population and Development Review, The Population Council, Inc., vol. 27(1), pages 65-102.
    2. Jan M. Hoem & Michaela Kreyenfeld, 2006. "Anticipatory analysis and its alternatives in life-course research," Demographic Research, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany, vol. 15(16), pages 461-484, November.
    3. Genda, Yuji & Kurosawa, Masako, 2001. "Transition from School to Work in Japan," Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, Elsevier, vol. 15(4), pages 465-488, December.
    4. Mario Cleves & William W. Gould & Roberto G. Gutierrez & Yulia Marchenko, 2010. "An Introduction to Survival Analysis Using Stata," Stata Press books, StataCorp LP, edition 3, number saus3, November.
    5. James Feyrer & Bruce Sacerdote & Ariel Dora Stern, 2008. "Will the Stork Return to Europe and Japan? Understanding Fertility within Developed Nations," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 22(3), pages 3-22, Summer.
    6. Jan M. Hoem & Michaela Kreyenfeld, 2006. "Anticipatory analysis and its alternatives in life-course research," Demographic Research, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany, vol. 15(17), pages 485-498, November.
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