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Fathers’ involvement in the family, fertility and maternal employment: Evidence from Central and Eastern Europe

Number: 131
Year: 2019
Author(s): Ester Fanelli, Paola Profeta
Keywords: Gender revolution,demographic trends,working mothers,gender roles,fertility
For a sample of Central and Eastern European countries, characterized by historically high female labor force participation and currently low fertility rates, we analyze whether fathers’ increased involvement in the family (housework and childcare) has the potential of increasing both fertility and maternal employment. Using two waves of the Generations and Gender Survey, we show that a higher fathers’ involvement in the family increases the subsequent likelihood that the mother has a second child and works full-time. Men’s fertility and work decisions are instead unrelated to mothers’ housework and childcare. We also show that fathers’ involvement in housework plays a more important role than involvement in childcare. The role of fathers’ involvement in housework is confirmed when we consider women who initially wanted or intended to have a child, women whose partner also wanted a child or women who intended to continue working.

Ester Fanelli, Brown University

Paola Profeta, Bocconi University and Dondena


Language: English


The paper may be downloaded here.