Influences of the Family of Origin on Fertility Behavior

Arieke J. Rijken, Utrecht University
Aart C. Liefbroer, Netherlands Interdisciplinary Demographic Institute (NIDI)

This study examines the influences of the family of origin on people’s timing of first birth and final number of children. In addition to direct intergenerational transmission of fertility behavior, we include the role played by family life experiences during youth, and the social status of the parental family. Hazard analyses (N = 9,173) and Poisson regression analyses (N = 5,110) are performed using data from the 2003 wave of the Netherlands Kinship Panel Study. Besides a positive relation between parents’ and children’s fertility patterns, we find that people who had positive family experiences during youth, i.e. people whose parents hardly had conflicts and people who had many contacts with relatives, have their first child at a younger age and have more children. The socioeconomic and cultural status of the parental family also affects fertility timing and quantum, these effects are only partly mediated by the child’s own social status.

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Presented in Session 19: Factors Affecting Fertility Timing