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Women's Education and Cohort Fertility during the Baby Boom
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2015 (English)In: Annual Meeting of the Population Association of America 2015: Presented in Session 48. Families and Households in Comparative and Historical Perspective, San Diego, 2015Conference paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

While today, women exceed men in terms of participation in advanced education, female enrollment rates beyond primary education were still very low in the first half of the 20th century. In many Western countries, this started to change around mid-century, with the proportion of women obtaining a degree in secondary education and beyond increasing steadily. The expected implication of rising female education was fertility decline andthepostponement of motherhood. Yet, many countries experienced declining ages at first birth and increasing total fertility instead. How can we reconcile these fertility trends with women’s increasing participation in education? Using census and large survey data for the USA  and  fourteen  European  countries,  this  paper  analyzes  trends  in  cohort  fertility underlying the Baby Boom and how they relate to women’s educational attainment. The focus is on quantum components of cohort fertility and parity progression, and their association with the age at first childbearing. We find that progression to higher parities continued to decline in all countries, in line with fertility transition trends that started back in the nineteenth century. However, in countries experiencing a Baby Boom, this was more than compensated  by  decreasing childlessness  and  parity  progression  after  the  first  child, particularly among women with education beyond the primary level. As a result, the proportions having exactly two children went up steadily in all countries and all educational groups.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
San Diego, 2015.
Keyword [en]
Baby boom, Europe
National Category
Sociology (excluding Social Work, Social Psychology and Social Anthropology)
Research subject
Sociology; History
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-103643OAI: diva2:814072
Annual Meeting of the Population Association of America 2015, San Diego, CA, April 30-May2
Available from: 2015-05-26 Created: 2015-05-26 Last updated: 2015-05-26Bibliographically approved

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Sandström, Glenn
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Centre for Population Studies (CPS)
Sociology (excluding Social Work, Social Psychology and Social Anthropology)

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