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  1. 1

    Female employment and fertility in developing countries

    Brazzell JF

    In: Quantitative approaches to analyzing socioeconomic determinants of Third World fertility trends: reviews of the literature. Project final report: overview, by Indiana University Fertility Determinants Group, George J. Stolnitz, director. [Unpublished] 1984. 79-91.

    Simple no-work/work distinctions are an unreliable basis for estimating causal linkages connecting female employment/work-status patterns to fertility. World Fertility Survey (WFS) data show about 3/4, 1/2, and 1/4 child differentials for over 20, 10-19, and under 10 years marital duration grouss respectively, for women employed since marriage. Effects on marriage seem strongest in Latin America and weakest in Asia. Controlling for age, marital duration, urban-rural residence, education, and husband's work status. But from the results of a number of WFS and other studies, it seems relationships of work status and fertility are difficult to confirm beyond directional indications, even in Latin America. A UN study using proximate determinants such as contraception and work status including a housework category indicated differentials in contraceptive practice were not significant net of control for education. Philippine data indicates low-income employment might increase fertility by decreasing breastfeeding, while WFS data from 5 Asian countries indicated pre-marital work encourages increased marriage age, without being specific about effects. Also, female employment must affect a large population to have a real impact on aggregate fertility, since female labor force activity is likely to change slowly if at all. Data presently available do not cover micro-level factors that may be important, such as effects of work on breastfeeding, nor do they lend themselves to examination by multi-equation analysis. More work is needed to isolate effects of work-status attributes like male employment, and to analyze intra-cohort mid-course fertility objective changes, as well as new theoretical process models such as competing time use and maternal role incompatibility.
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  2. 2

    The changing roles of women and men in the family and fertility regulation: some labour policy aspects

    Oppong C

    In: Family and population. Proceedings of the "Scientific Conference on Family and Population," Espoo, Finland, May 25-27, 1984, edited by Hellevi Hatunen. Helsinki, Finland, Vaestoliitto, 1984. 62-83.

    There is growing evidence that labor policies, such as those advocated by the International Labor Organization (ILO), promote changes in familial roles and that these changes in turn have an impact on fertility. A conceptual model describing these linkages is offered and the degree to which the linkages hypothesized in the model are supported by research findings is indicated. The conceptual model specifies that: 1) as reliance on child labor declines, through the enactment of minimum age labor laws, the economic value of children declines, and parents adopt smaller family size ideals; 2) as security increases for the elderly, through the provision of social security and pension plans, the elderly become less dependent on their children, and the perceived need to produce enough children to ensure security in old age is diminished; and 3) as sexual equality in job training and employment and the availability of flexible work schedules increase, sexual equality in the domestic setting increases, and women begin to exert more control over their own fertility. ILO studies and many other studies provide considerable evidence in support of these hypothesized linkages; however, the direction or causal nature of some of the associations has not been established. Development levels, rural or urban residence, and a number of other factors also appear to influence many of these relationships. Overall, the growing body of evidence accords well with ILO programs and instruments which promote: 1) the enactment of minimum age work laws to reduce reliance on child labor, 2) the establishment of social security systems and pension plans to promote the economic independence of the elderly, 3) the promotion of sexual equality in training programs and employment; 4) the promotion of the idea of sexual equality in the domestic setting; and 5) the establishment of employment policies which do not unfairly discriminate against workers with family responsibilities.
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