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Childless future? : an insight from the analysis of childbearing preferences in Europe

Kinderlose Zukunft? : ein Einblick aus der Analyse über Geburtenpräferenzen in Europa
[journal article]

Testa, Maria Rita

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Please use the following Persistent Identifier (PID) to cite this document:http://nbn-resolving.de/urn:nbn:de:0168-ssoar-201637

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Abstract 'The relatively low levels of ideal and ultimately intended family size manifested in some European countries (Goldstein et al. 2003; Testa, 2006) inspired a careful analysis of the childless preference in Europe based on the Eurobarometer surveys in 2001 and 2006. The aim of the current paper is to investigate the childlessness ideal, or the intention to stay without children, and their contribution to the current levels of ideal and intended fertility in Europe. The analysis is complemented by a comparison between childless women and women with children in respect to two relevant aspects related to childbearing and childrearing: the circumstances perceived as most important in the fertility decisions and the opinion on gender roles in family life. Findings show that young Austrian women hold the record for the lowest fertility ideals and intentions, which are on average definitely below replacement levels. Austria is also the country with the largest diffusion of the childless preference. However, the childless option only plays a secondary role in explaining the cross-national differences and childlessness - although quite high in some countries - is still very rare as an enduring or a lifetime choice. Interestingly, childless women are not significantly different from women with children in their opinion on the relevant childbearing decision- making factors and do not show different views on issues related to gender roles in family life.' (author's abstract)|
Keywords child; population development; Europe; family size; family planning; desire for children; fertility; birth; quantity; international comparison; number of children
Classification Population Studies, Sociology of Population
Method empirical; quantitative empirical
Document language English
Publication Year 2007
Page/Pages p. 9-30
Journal Sozialwissenschaftlicher Fachinformationsdienst soFid (2007) Bevölkerungsforschung 2007/2
Licence Deposit Licence - No Redistribution, No Modifications