The Education Gradient on Unintended vs. Intended Fertility: Australia and the United States

Paula S. England, Stanford University
Belinda Hewitt, University of Queensland
Janeen Baxter, University of Queensland

We show that women and men with less education have a higher ratio of unintended (mistimed or unwanted) to intended births in both Australia and the United States. The two nations differ in that income inequality is higher in the United States and the U.S. lacks the universal health care available in Australia (which includes access to contraception and abortion). The fact that the two nations have a similar tendency of the less educated to have more unintended relative to intended births suggests a similar socioeconomi cause in both nations. We use multinomial logistic regression and mediation models to illuminate explanations of the education disparities, using the U.S. NLSY data and the Australian HILDA data.

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Presented in Session 131: Household Configurations and Reproductive Life