nep-dem New Economics Papers
on Demographic Economics
Issue of 2022‒10‒17
seven papers chosen by
Héctor Pifarré i Arolas
University of Wisconsin

  1. Mothers’ birth giving status and the division of parental leave. A comparison of adoptive and biological parents. By Moberg, Ylva; van der Vleuten , Maaike
  2. Parental Leave Benefits and Child Penalties By Sevrin Waights
  3. Child Care in the United States: Markets, Policy, and Evidence By Herbst, Chris M.
  4. The gendered impacts of delayed parenthood: a dynamic analysis of young adulthood By Nisen, Jessica; Bijlsma, Maarten J.; Martikainen, Pekka; Wilson, Ben; Myrskyla, Mikko
  5. Changing Gender Norms across Generations: Evidence from a Paternity Leave Reform By Lídia Farré; Cristina Felfe; Libertad González; Patrick Schneider
  6. The Effects of an Increase in the Retirement Age on Health - Evidence from Administrative Data By Barschkett, Mara; Geyer, Johannes; Haan, Peter; Hammerschmid, Anna
  7. The Rise of Age-Friendly Jobs By Daron Acemoglu; Nicolaj Søndergaard Mühlbach; Andrew J. Scott

  1. By: Moberg, Ylva (Swedish Institute for Social Research (SOFI), Stockholm University.); van der Vleuten , Maaike (Swedish Institute for Social Research (SOFI), Stockholm University.)
    Abstract: Mothers’ longer time on parental leave after having children has been proposed as one reason for remaining gender inequalities in the labor market. This paper investigates the determinants of the unequal division of parental leave, specifically the argument that mothers take more parental leave as a consequence of pregnancy and breastfeeding. We compare the division of parental leave of biological parents (where the mother gave birth) to adoptive parents (where she did not), to assess to what extend the unequal division of childcare responsibilities can be explained by the physiological aspects of biological motherhood. We analyze Swedish register data on couples who had their first biological or adopted child in 1994 – 2009, and families that had both adopted and biological children. We find that the mother’s share of parental leave is lower if the child is adopted. The difference is small, 80% versus 82%, although statistically significant. We thus conclude that going through a pregnancy increases the mothers initial parental leave, but the impact is minor. Instead, our results indicate that gender norms of mothers as caregivers and fathers as breadwinners is more likely to explain (at least part of) couples’ division of parental leave.
    Keywords: parental leave; gender norms; motherhood; division of labor;
    JEL: D13 J13 J16 J22
    Date: 2022–09–23
  2. By: Sevrin Waights
    Abstract: I use the universe of tax returns in Germany and a regression kink design to estimate the impact of the benefit amount available to high-earning women after their first childbirth on subsequent within-couple earnings inequality. Lower benefit amounts result in a reduced earnings gap that persists beyond the benefit period for at least nine years after the birth. The longer-term impacts are driven by couples where the mother earned more than the father pre-birth. Simulations suggest it would take a 50% reduction in the benefit amount to completely eliminate long-run child penalties for sample couples. Lower benefits also reduce take-up of paid leave by mothers, lower the chances of having further children, and have no impact on marital stability.
    Keywords: Child penalties, gender inequality in earnings, social norms, parental leave policy, regression kink design
    JEL: D63 H31 J13 J16 K31 M52 Z13
    Date: 2022
  3. By: Herbst, Chris M. (Arizona State University)
    Abstract: Participation in non-parental child care arrangements is now the norm for preschool-age children in the U.S. However, child care services are becoming increasingly expensive for many families, and quality is highly uneven across providers and sectors, raising questions about the impact of child care costs and quality on parental employment and child development. The U.S. policy landscape is dominated by three policies that subsidize costs for low-income families or attempt to improve the safety and quality of providers: Child Care and Development Fund, regulations, and quality rating and improvement systems. In this paper, I provide a thorough review of the evidence on each policy, focusing on how they influence a wide range of family and provider outcomes. The paper begins with a detailed description of the structure and functioning of the child care market, using the most up-to-date data on families' utilization of care services and provider characteristics. I then draw on a diverse set of studies across multiple fields to summarize the evidence on the impact of child care policy. In the final section of the paper, I offer recommendations for future research in each policy area.
    Keywords: child care, subsidies, regulations, maternal employment, child development
    JEL: H75 I24 I38 J24
    Date: 2022–09
  4. By: Nisen, Jessica; Bijlsma, Maarten J.; Martikainen, Pekka; Wilson, Ben; Myrskyla, Mikko
    Abstract: Young adulthood is a dynamic and demographically dense stage in the life course. This poses a challenge for research on the socioeconomic consequences of parenthood timing, which most often focuses on women. We chart the dynamics of delayed parenthood and its implications for educational and labor market trajectories for young adult women and men using a novel longitudinal analysis approach, the parametric g-formula. This method allows the estimation of both population-averaged effects (among all women and men) and average treatment effects (among mothers and fathers). Based on high-quality data from Finnish registers, we find that later parenthood exacerbates the educational advantage of women in comparison to men and attenuates the income advantage of men in comparison to women across young adult ages. Gender differences in the consequences of delayed parenthood on labor market trajectories are largely not explained by changes in educational trajectories. Moreover, at the time of entering parenthood, delayed parenthood improves the incomes of fathers more than those of mothers, thereby exacerbating existing gender differences. The results provide population-level evidence on how the delay of parenthood has contributed to the strengthening of women’s educational position relative to that of men. Further, the findings on greater increases in fathers’ than mothers’ incomes at the time of entering parenthood, as followed by postponement, may help explain why progress in achieving gender equality in the division of paid and unpaid work in families has been slow.
    Keywords: fertility timing; gender; education; labor market trajectory; G-formula; dynamic modeling; 101019329; 2017-01021; 340-2013-5164; 948727; 336475 (COSTPOST)
    JEL: N0
    Date: 2022–09–01
  5. By: Lídia Farré; Cristina Felfe; Libertad González; Patrick Schneider
    Abstract: Direct exposure to counter-stereotypical behaviors early in life has been put forward as a promising way to change gender norms across generations. We ask to which extent public policy designed to promote counter-stereotypical behavior among parents influences gender norms for their children. Specifically, we combine the national-level introduction of paternity leave in Spain with a unique, large-scale lab-in-the-field experiment conducted with children born around the policy change. We provide causal evidence that, at age 12, children whose fathers were eligible for paternity leave exhibit more egalitarian attitudes towards gender roles and are more supportive of mothers and fathers being equally engaged in the labor market and in the home. They also engage more in counter-stereotypical day-to-day behaviors and expect to deviate from the male-breadwinner model in the future.
    Keywords: gender role attitudes, paternity leave, Social Norms
    JEL: J08 J13 J16 J18
    Date: 2022–01
  6. By: Barschkett, Mara (DIW Berlin and FU Berlin); Geyer, Johannes (DIW Berlin and Netspar); Haan, Peter (DIW Berlin, FU Berlin and Netspar); Hammerschmid, Anna (DIW Berlin)
    Abstract: This study analyzes the causal effect of an increase in the retirement age on health. We exploit a sizable cohort-specific pension reform for women using two complementary empirical approaches – a Regression Discontinuity Design and a Difference-in-Differences approach. The analysis is based on official records covering all individuals insured by the public health system in Germany and including all certified diagnoses by practitioners. This enables us to gain a detailed understanding of the multi-dimensionality in these health effects. The empirical findings reflect the multi-dimensionality but allow for deriving two broader conclusions. We provide evidence that the increase in the retirement age negatively affects health outcomes as the prevalence of several diagnoses, e.g., mental health, musculoskeletal diseases, and obesity, increases. In contrast, we do not find support for an improvement in health related to a prolonged working life since there is no significant evidence for a reduction in the prevalence of any health outcome we consider. These findings hold for both identification strategies, are robust to sensitivity checks, and do not change when correcting for multiple hypothesis testing.
    Keywords: Germany; retirement; pension reform; health; ICD-10; regression discontinuity design; difference-in-differences;
    JEL: I10 I12 I18 J14 J18 J26
    Date: 2021–11–29
  7. By: Daron Acemoglu; Nicolaj Søndergaard Mühlbach; Andrew J. Scott
    Abstract: In 1990, one in five U.S. workers were aged over 50 years whereas today it is one in three. One possible explanation for this is that occupations have become more accommodating to the preferences of older workers. We explore this by constructing an “age-friendliness” index for occupations. We use Natural Language Processing to measure the degree of overlap between textual descriptions of occupations and characteristics which define age friendliness. Our index provides an approximation to rankings produced by survey participants and has predictive power for the occupational share of older workers. We find that between 1990 and 2020 around three quarters of occupations have seen their age-friendliness increase and employment in above-average age-friendly occupations has risen by 49 million. However, older workers have not benefited disproportionately from this rise, with substantial gains going to younger females and college graduates and with male non-college educated workers losing out the most. These findings point to the need to frame the rise of age-friendly jobs in the context of other labour market trends and imperfections. Purely age-based policies are insufficient given both heterogeneity amongst older workers as well as similarities between groups of older and younger workers. The latter is especially apparent in the overlapping appeal of specific occupational characteristics.
    JEL: E24 J11 J24 J62
    Date: 2022–09

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