About the speaker
Trude Lappegård is professor in sociology at the University in Oslo. Her research mainly concerns family demography and fertility research in relation to gender roles and family policy.
About the presentation
The aim of this paper is to investigate the relationship between women’s employment and childbearing in times of economic uncertainty. The point of departure is a somewhat puzzling downward trend in fertility level in the Nordic countries after the financial crisis. We ask whether full-time work is becoming a stronger determinant for the transition to motherhood and higher parities in Norway, and whether this can explain the downward trend in fertility. We are especially interested in whether the effect differ by women’s educational attainment. We use high quality register data including complete fertility and employment histories for all women covering a period of more than 20 years. Our results show that full-time employment is indeed becoming a stronger determinant for having a child, but more so for first birth than higher parities, and more so for low educated than highly educated. However, while full-time employment is becoming a stronger determinant for having a first birth, it cannot fully explain the downward trend in fertility.