Educational Homogamy and Childbearing: A Cohort Study on the Changing Relationship between Relative Resources in Couples and Their First and Second Birth Transitions

Natalie Nitsche, Yale University

Recently, an increasing number of studies have investigated childbearing behavior from a couple-perspective. So far, the focus has been either on understanding how the gendered division of domestic work or on how educational assortative mating may affect birth hazards. No study has yet integrated both approaches simultaneously, which is important since it has been shown that the division of housework can be dependent on the partners’ relative earnings or education. This paper therefore investigates how relative resources such as educational pairings and relative income while controlling for the gendered division of domestic work relate to the first and second birth hazards in Germany, and if these relationships have changed over birth cohorts. Indeed, the results indicate significant effects of educational pairings on first and second birth hazards; in particular, highly educated homogamous couples have higher second birth hazards than couples with less education or than couples with a highly educated wife and a husband with less education).

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Presented in Poster Session 2: Fertility Intentions and Behavior