In this paper, we look into how country-specific factors shape the interrelationship between childbearing and women’s labor supply. To this end, we compare Italy and Poland, two low-fertility countries where the country-specific obstacles to work and family reconciliation are similarly strong but which differ in the history of women’s labor supply and the extent to which couples’material aspirations are satisfied by men’s earnings. Our findings show that women’s employment clearly conflicts with childbearing in Italy, while in Polandwomen tend to combine the two activities, despite the similar difficulties they face. These results challenged the standard microeconomic explanations and point to the importance of other country-specific factors, apart from conditions for work and family reconciliation, in shaping women’s employment and fertility decisions, such as economic incentives or culturally rooted behavioral patterns. Overall, our study provides thus foundations for explaining the variation in the relationship between women’s employment and fertility in an enlarged Europe.
Childlessness is an increasingly common condition in many European societies. The consequences that this demographic phenomenon might have on welfare systems—and long-term care policies in particular—are widespread. This is particularly the case for the familistic welfare states of Southern Europe. Using data from the 2003 Italian GGS, the article explores the relation between the absence of children and support received in later life. Overall, the results support the idea that in Italy elderly nonparents, compared with those who have children, do not face significantly large support deficits in terms of the likelihood of receiving support. However, it is shown that they are likely to miss those forms of support that are most needed in the case of bad health. Next, the childless are more likely to be helped by nonrelatives and not-for-profit organizations and to a lesser extent by the welfare system.
Neyer, Gerda and Lappegård, Trude and Vignoli, Daniele
Does gender equality matter for fertility? Demographic findings to this question are rather inconclusive. We argue that gender equality is a complex issue that needs to be conceptualized in a way which includes gender equity and allows for gender differences but uncovers gender inequalities. We explore this approach by investigating the impact of four dimensions of gender equality on women´s and men´s childbearing intentions in Europe: the possibility to maintain a household, the capabilities to choose, the resources to have agency, and gender equity in household work and in care. We apply logistic regressions to data of the Generations and Gender Survey. Our results suggest that gender equality and fertility intentions are intertwined in a multi-faceted way, and that gender equality in the areas which we examine exert different impacts on women’s and men’s childbearing intentions. Our study also confirms that parenthood still constitutes a dividing line between more and less gender equality, and that this affects childbearing intentions of childless women and childless men differently than that of mothers and fathers. This necessitates an approach which allows identifying the essential gender inequalities in employment, in society, and in the family which matter for childbearing decisions.
“Familism” can be identified with the people’s attitude to consider their own utility and family utility as being one and the same thing. Familistic practices and attitudes - which concern downward (toward children) and upward (toward the old) intergenerational ties - has been associated to Italian couples’ reproductive behavior. However, results differ at the macro and the micro level. This paper will focus on intergenerational downward ties in Italy and their effect, at the individual level, on fertility intentions. The controversial term “familism” will be, firstly, defined in connection with other expressions like “strong family”, “stem-family” and “too much family”. Intergenerational downward ties and the related practices, specified as part of the broader frame of familism, will be, then, operationalize. Finally, intergenerational downward practices will be considered in connection with Italian couples’ reproductive intentions in a multivariate analysis. We will analyze data from the “Generations and Gender” survey for Italy. Our dependent variable is the couple intention to have a child (or another child) in the next three years. Intergenerational downward ties will refer to grandparents’ informal childcare, monetary transfers toward children, and satisfaction with relationship with parents. Grandparents’ attitude toward another grandchild – as perceived by interviewer - is also taken into account. We will control for variables that can affect grandparent’s involvement and fertility intentions, as the life stage of grandparents and grandchildren, along with classical control variables (partners’ education, partners’ working status, region of residence). According to preliminary analyses, geographical proximity of mother-in-law seems to have a negative effect on woman’s intentions to have a second and a third child. The hypothesis of an intergeneration downward normative pressure to limit fertility is considered.
France and Italy lie at the two extremes as regards fertility levels in Europe. Although previous findings showed that desired fertility is very similar in France and Italy, an examination of intentions to have a child in the following three years points to a country-specific difference. Namely, in France reproductive intentions are higher than in Italy for all parities. Moreover, since the actual fertility levels are so different, there could be some sorts of constraints that limit fertility more strongly in Italy than in France. Taking advantage of the first two rounds of the French and Italian Gender and Generation Surveys, in this paper we aim at highlighting the profiles of those couples who do not realize their intended fertility projects in the two countries considered. This line of reasoning may provide important input to policy makers wishing to lift the constraints to fertility realization.
Who does not desire two children? A France-Italy comparison - In the industrialized word, France and Italy placed at the extremes as far as fertility behaviour is concerned. Besides these differences, in this work we also wonder whether (or not) fertility desires are different between the two countries. In particular, we aim at scrutinizing the factors influencing the choice of the fertility pattern in France and Italy, paying special attention to the "single child model" and "large family model". Our findings highlight that the desired number of children in France is only slightly higher than in Italy. Moreover, also women who do not desire a two-child family are very similar in the two countries.
This paper contributes to the analysis of fertility differentials between migrants and the native-born by examining the transition to first child using event history analysis. We looked for a tool that could link anthropological investigation with the representativeness of a statistical study. The meeting point is anthropological demography that permits the merging of different methods and approaches. We use event history as quantitative translation of the life course approach. The data examined are the first-wave Italian Families and Social Subjects Survey conducted in 2003 and the first-wave Russian Gender and Generations Survey conducted in 2004. The datasets are examined separately and the results are contrasted. An immigrant is or this study defined as a person born outside of the country at interest. The objective of the study is twofold: First we seek to determine whether differences exist in the decision and timing of childbearing between native and foreign-born women in Italy and in Russia. Second we aim to compare the experiences of immigrants in the two countries, to determine whether there may be any commonalities inherent to the immigrant populations, despite moving into widely different contexts. This leads us to the following two conclusions: First, the similarities in the risk profiles of our immigrants into vastly different country contexts is more suggestive of immigrants being a distinct group rather than assimilating or conforming to the native fertility patterns. Second, our results do not seem to confirm the presence of either disruption or family formation being key events associated with migration.