The impact of institutions on motherhood and work

Daniela Del Boca, University of Turin
Silvia Pasqua, University of Turin
Chiara Pronzato, Università Bocconi

In this paper, we aim to explore the impact of social policies and labour market characteristics on women’s decisions regarding working and having children, using data from the European Community Household Panel (ECHP). We estimate the two decisions jointly, including in the analysis, beyond personal characteristics, variables related to the child care system, parental leave arrangements, and labour market flexibility. Our empirical results show that a non-negligible portion of the differences in participation and fertility rates for women from different European countries can be attributed to the characteristics of these institutions. Child care availability increases the likelihood of women‘s employment while the effect of part-time differs according to its characteristics and for women with different levels of education. Finally, the generosity of parental leave schemes positively and significantly affects the likelihood of having a child, especially for women with lower education.

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Presented in Session 91: Employment, Work-Family Balance and Fertility

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