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.
In Western countries, rates of second and third births typically increase with educational attainment, a feature that usually disappears if unobserved heterogeneity is brought into the event-history analysis. By contrast, in a country like Romania, second and third birth rates have been found to decline when moving across groups with increasing education, and the decline becomes greater if unobserved heterogeneity is added to the analysis. The present paper demonstrates this pattern, and shows that, because this feature is retained in the presence of control variables, such as age at first birth and period effects, the selectivity is not produced by a failure to account for the control variables.
What we will call the age-based TMFR is computed by adding up age-specific marital-fertility rates in the hope of estimating the number of children ever born to a woman who is married throughout the childbearing years. Demographers have long been strongly skeptical about this quantity because it normally indicates implausibly many children. Our analysis of data from the Romanian GGS confirms this finding, but also shows that when we embed the investigation in an event-history analysis with fixed and time-varying control covariates, patterns of relative risks reveal interesting features of childbearing behavior which are quite robust against model re-specification. This is also true when we replace the age-based TMFR by an alternative duration-based TMFR and extend the method to cover any type of living arrangement. Because the resulting Total Union-type Fertility Rate (TUFR) explicitly accounts for the living arrangement, it improves on the Total Fertility Rate, which does not. This highlights the importance of transcending the limitations of conventional published statistics and gives a scope for improving the latter.
Hoem, J. M. and Kostova, D. and Jasilioniene, A. and Muresan, C.
Using data from the first round of the national Gender and Generations Surveys of Russia, Romania, and Bulgaria, and from a similar survey of Hungary, which were all collected in recent years, we study rates of entry into marital and non-marital unions. We have used elements from the narrative of the Second Demographic Transition (SDT) as a vehicle to give our analysis of the data from the four countries some coherence, and find what can be traces of the SDT in these countries. The details vary by country; in particular, latter-day developments in union formation patterns did not start at the same time in all the countries, but in our assessment it began everywhere before communism fell, that is, before the societal transition to a market economy got underway in 1990.
This study presents a life-table description of events related to the experience of children and of parents as they changed during the last two decencies, 1985-2005, in Romania. We consider the perspectives of men as well as of women and of couples as well as of children. The data we used stems from the Generations and Gender Survey carried out in Romania in 2005. We document for family behavioral changes that have accompanied the political and socio-economic transformation following the fall of the communist regime. We found that parenthood is still experienced very soon after entry into first marriage, and even slightly sooner when the first union starts as a cohabitation. However shotgun marriages, i.e. pregnancy followed by wedding, remain at the same level during the whole period. From children’s perspective the changes are related to a growing number and proportion born to cohabiting couples. Lone motherhood remains relatively rare. In post-socialist Romania fewer children experience parental disruptions than in the period of communist rule, and fewer children born to a lone mother experience a step father.
This study investigates the effect of educational attainment and educational enrolment on the risks of second birth in Romania, using data from the Generations and Gender Survey of 2005. Looking at the 1950-2005 period, we found a persistently negative effect of education on second birth, i.e., women with a relatively high level of education have lower risks of birth. Being in education significantly reduces the risk of second birth compared to women with no educational qualification. The risk is not lower, however, when we compare women who are still enrolled in education with individuals who have a high level of education. The strong negative effect of age at first birth observed when we do not control for personality weakens once we control for unobserved heterogeneity. We also show the extent to which changes in the socio-political regime, in family policies, and in the educational system affect the impact of education on second births.
This study presents a life-table description of a wide range of events concerning family formation and fertility in Romania, by contrasting two different periods in Romanian history: a period of authoritarian regime and centrally planned economy (1980-1989) and a period of democratic political regime and market-oriented economy (1996-2005). A large number of single- and multi-decrement life tables deals with leaving home, separating from the parental family, forming first union, direct marriage, cohabitation, childbearing in the context of cohabitation or marriage, separation and divorce, and parenting (first birth and second birth). Perspectives of men and women, as well those of couples and children, are considered. The main data source we used here is Generations and Gender Survey carried out in Romania in 2005. Our life-table analysis confirms the early stage of the Second Demographic Transition in Romania. However, in European context it still remains a society highly valuing marriage and childbearing, despite the evidence in family behaviour changes which have accompanied political and socioeconomical transformations after the fall of communist regime.