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Universal versus economically polarized change in age at first birth : a French–British comparison

Rendall, Michael and Ekert-Jaffé, Olivia and Joshi, Heather and Lynch, Kevin and Mougin, Rémi and Ekert-Jaffe, Olivia and Mougin, Remi (2009) Universal versus economically polarized change in age at first birth : a French–British comparison. Population and Development Review, 35 (1). pp. 89-115. ISSN 0098-7921. DOI UNSPECIFIED

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France and the United Kingdom in the 1980s and 1990s represented two contrasting institutional models for the integration of employment and motherhood: The ‘universalistic’ regime type offering subsidized child-care and maternity-leave benefits at all income levels; and the ‘means-testing’ regime type mainly offering income-tested benefits for single mothers. Using the two countries as comparative case studies, we develop and test the hypothesis that the socio-economic gradient of fertility timing has become increasingly mediated by family policy. We find increasing polarization in age at first birth by pre-childbearing occupation in the U.K. but not in France. Early first births persisted in the U.K. only among women in low-skill occupations, while shifts towards increasingly late first births occurred in clerical/secretarial occupations and above. Age at first birth increased across all occupations in France, but was still much earlier on average than for all but low-skill British mothers.

Item Type: Article
Divisions: IOE Departments > Departments > National Research and Development Centre for Adult Literacy and Numeracy
IOE Departments > Departments > Centre for Longitudinal Studies
Depositing User: IOE Repository Editor (2)
Date Deposited: 10 Jul 2010 10:36
Last Modified: 29 Jan 2015 08:29
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