Jobs and kids: female employment and fertility in China
1 China Center for Health Development Studies, Health Science Center, Peking University, No.38 Xueyuan Road, Haidian District, P.O. Box 505, Beijing 100191, China
2 Walter H. Shorenstein Asia-Pacific Research Center, Stanford University, Stanford, USA
3 Department of Economics and Department of Preventive Medicine, State University of New York at Stony Brook, Stony Brook, USA
4 John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University, and National Bureau of Economic Research, Cambridge, USA
IZA Journal of Labor & Development 2013, 2:12 doi:10.1186/2193-9020-2-12Published: 9 December 2013
Data on 2,355 married women from the 2006 China Health and Nutrition Survey are used to study how female employment affects fertility in China. China has deep concerns with both population size and female employment, so the relationship between the two should be better understood. Causality flows in both directions; hence, we use a plausible instrumental variable to isolate the effect of employment on fertility. Female employment reduces a married woman’s preferred number of children by 0.35 on average and her actual number by 0.50. Ramifications for China’s one-child policy are discussed.
J13; J18; O15