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Does Fertility Behavior Spread among Friends?

Balbo, Nicoletta and Barban, Nicola (2014) 'Does Fertility Behavior Spread among Friends?' American Sociological Review, 79 (3). 412 - 431. ISSN 0003-1224

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Abstract

By integrating insights from economic and sociological theories, this article investigates whether and through which mechanisms friends’ fertility behavior affects an individual’s transition to parenthood. By exploiting the survey design of the Add Health data, our strategy allows us to properly identify interaction effects and distinguish them from selection and contextual effects. We use a series of discrete-time event history models with random effects at the dyadic level. Results show that, net of confounding effects, a friend’s childbearing increases an individual’s risk of becoming a parent. We find a short-term, curvilinear effect: an individual’s risk of childbearing starts increasing after a friend’s childbearing, reaches its peak approximately two years later, and then decreases.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: fertility, transition to parenthood, Add Health, social interactions, peer effect
Divisions: Faculty of Social Sciences > Institute for Social and Economic Research
Depositing User: Elements
Date Deposited: 04 Mar 2021 12:54
Last Modified: 04 Mar 2021 12:54
URI: http://repository.essex.ac.uk/id/eprint/29997

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