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Does parenthood increase happiness? Evidence for Poland

Author

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  • Anna Baranowska

    ()

  • Anna Matysiak

    () (Institute of Statistics and Demography, Warsaw School of Economics)

Abstract

In the recent decade demographers turned their attention to investigating the effects of children on self-rated happiness or life satisfaction. The underlying idea of this strand of research is to find out whether it pays off to individuals to become parents in terms of their subjective wellbeing, given the costs of having children. This paper follows this line of research and studies the impacts of childbearing on individual-level happiness in Poland; a country which experienced a rapid decline in fertility despite particularly strong attachment of young Poles to family values. To this end, we applied methods for panel data analysis which allowed us to control for endogeneity of subjective well-being and parenthood. Our results reveal a significantly positive effect of the first child on the subjective well-being of mothers. For men, this impact is weaker and most likely temporary since it weakens with an increase in child’s age. Importantly, neither for men nor for women does the positive impact of parenthood rise with an increase in parity. This may explain persistence of low fertility in this country.

Suggested Citation

  • Anna Baranowska & Anna Matysiak, 2011. "Does parenthood increase happiness? Evidence for Poland," Working Papers 38, Institute of Statistics and Demography, Warsaw School of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:isd:wpaper:38
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Arnstein Aassve & Anna Barbuscia & Letizia Mencarini, 2014. "Expected happiness from childbearing and its realization," Working Papers 062, "Carlo F. Dondena" Centre for Research on Social Dynamics (DONDENA), Università Commerciale Luigi Bocconi.
    2. Mikko Myrskylä & Rachel Margolis, 2014. "Happiness: Before and After the Kids," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 51(5), pages 1843-1866, October.
    3. Zheng Mu & Yu Xie, 2016. "'Motherhood penalty' and 'fatherhood premium'? Fertility effects on parents in China," Demographic Research, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany, vol. 35(47), pages 1373-1410, November.
    4. Mikucka, Malgorzata, 2015. "How does parenthood affect life satisfaction in Russia?," MPRA Paper 65376, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    5. Mikko Myrskylä & Rachel Margolis, 2012. "Happiness: before and after the kids," MPIDR Working Papers WP-2012-013, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany.
    6. Switek, Malgorzata, 2013. "Explaining Well-Being over the Life Cycle: A Look at Life Transitions during Young Adulthood," IZA Discussion Papers 7877, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    7. Arnstein Aassve & Bruno Arpino & Nicoletta Balbo, 2016. "It Takes Two to Tango: Couples’ Happiness and Childbearing," European Journal of Population, Springer;European Association for Population Studies, vol. 32(3), pages 339-354, August.
    8. repec:spr:jhappi:v:19:y:2018:i:1:d:10.1007_s10902-016-9817-y is not listed on IDEAS
    9. Anna Matysiak & Letizia Mencarini & Daniele Vignoli, 2016. "Work–Family Conflict Moderates the Relationship Between Childbearing and Subjective Well-Being," European Journal of Population, Springer;European Association for Population Studies, vol. 32(3), pages 355-379, August.
    10. Mikko Myrskylä & Rachel Margolis, 2014. "Happiness - before and after the Kids," SOEPpapers on Multidisciplinary Panel Data Research 642, DIW Berlin, The German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP).
    11. Michal Brzezinski, 2017. "Diagnosing unhappiness dynamics: Evidence from Poland and Russia," Working Papers 2017-27, Faculty of Economic Sciences, University of Warsaw.
    12. Le Moglie, Marco & Mencarini, Letizia & Rapallini, Chiara, 2015. "Is it just a matter of personality? On the role of subjective well-being in childbearing behavior," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 117(C), pages 453-475.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    happiness ; life satisfaction; fertility; childbearing; parenthood;

    JEL classification:

    • J13 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Fertility; Family Planning; Child Care; Children; Youth
    • J17 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Value of Life; Foregone Income

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