This paper follows previous research on the role of social capital and gender equity in fertility behavior. Our research question is to what extent social capital and gender equality in housework and childcare can explain fertility intentions and subsequent births in Russia. Russia is a country with prevalence of one-child families, whereas social norm is still two-children family. Since state support of families with children is weak and public childcare is underdeveloped, families bear most of child-related costs. The paper is based on two waves of Generations and Gender Survey (GGS), conducted in Russia in 2004 and 2007. Sample includes women of 18-44 and men with partners of the same age. We used binary logit models. Dependent variables include a) intentions to give birth within 3 years, b) births between two waves. Main explanatory variables include gender equity and social capital. The former varies from traditional to egalitarian partnerships. The latter is measured by five variables - 'parental family', 'attitudes toward intergenerational support', 'financial transfers', 'closeness to parents' and 'received childcare'. We control for sex, birth cohort, regional availability of public childcare, socio-economic status. The results show that social network for childcare does not influence either intended or actual fertility. Close relations with separately living parents increase only intentions to become parents. But access to financial transfers influence both intended and actual births of the first and second child. Besides, egalitarian division of housework and childcare significantly increases the probability of first and second births and probability of intentions to have a second child. The tentative conclusion is that gender equity concept is more relevant to explaining fertility behavior of Russian population than social capital.
By using data of seven countries drawn from the Gender and Generation Survey, we study the relationship between mothers’ employment and informal childcare provided by grandparents. Whereas intergenerational support encompasses several dimensions, childcare provided by grandparents is of particular interest. In general, we find that mothers’ employment is positively associated with grandparents providing childcare. However, grandparents differ in their preferences for performing childcare. The extent to which grandparent provide childcare depends on their age, health, activity status as well as the residential proximity to their children. But their provision of childcare also depends on their preferences and the interactions taking place between generations, all of which are unobserved in survey data. Those with a strong positive preference obviously provide more childcare, but they also have more traditional attitudes, which are reflected in a negative impact on mothers’ employment. Preferences for performing childcare are generally unobserved, and making the appropriate corrections in the empirical analysis shows that the effect of grand-parenting on mothers’ employment is understated when using standard regression techniques.