Child-number and child-timing intentions: a micro-macro European framework

Maria Rita Testa, Vienna Institute of Demography

Aim of the study is the analysis of the predictors of child-number and child-timing intentions in a micro-macro framework and in a cross-national setting. The Eurobarometer survey conducted in 2006 is used to run ordinal logistic regression models where the response variable is the total number of additionally intended children, or the intention to have a\nother child in the next three years. In the latter case the ordinal structure of the outcome is given by the following response options: definitely yes, probably yes, probably not, definitely not. Data from 25 European countries are considered in the analysis. Preliminary results show that cohabiting people tend to postpone the individual decision to have a first child as compared to married couples. At the contextual level the childbearing experience of the (old) parents’ generations does positively influence the childbearing intentions of the (young) children’s generations. The relationship concerns both the quantum and the timing of intended fertility: the higher the parents’ mean actual number of children, the higher the total intended family size of children’s generations. The lower the mean age at the first birth of the parents’ generations, the higher the probability to plan a child in the next three years among the children’s generations.

Presented in Session 73: Reproductive decision-making in a macro-micro perspective (REPRO)