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Modena, F., Rondinelli, C., Sabatini, F. (2011). Economic insecurity and fertility intentions: the case of Italy. Paper prepared for presentation at the IARIW-OECD Conference on Economic Insecurity Paris, France, November 22-23, 2011

We advance an explanation for the combination of low female participation rates with lowest-low fertility levels in Italy. Starting from the assumption that childbearing decisions are affected by uncertainty about future employment, income, and wealth, we build three measures of economic insecurity and test their effect on fertility in Italy. We show that the instability of women’s work status (i.e. the fact of holding occasional and precarious positions) significantly discourages childbearing. Household wealth insecurity significantly and positively affects the decision to postpone, or even renounce, the first childbearing. The chances of further childbearing are significantly and negatively influenced by household income insecurity.

Authors

Modena, Francesca

Francesca Modena is Post-doc Research Fellow in Economics at the University of Trento. Her main research interests are Poverty and Development, Household Economics, Well-being and social capital.   Current position • Research Fellow, Department of Economics, University of Trento....

Sabatini, Fabio

I am Associate Professor of Economics at the Department of Economics and Law of Sapienza University of Rome, where I currently teach Economics and Policy of Networks, Applied Economics and Public Economics. I collaborate with the Laboratory for Comparative Social Research of the Higher School of...

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