Second Generation Mothers. Do the children of immigrants adjust their fertility to host country norms?
This chapter explores the fertility behavior, specifically the transition to parenthood, of the second generation, i.e. the children of immigrants, in Sweden from an integration perspective. We examine the impact of education, income, labor market attachment, nationality and immigrant experience on first births of second generation women and contrast it with that of the native Swedish-born population. Using a longitudinal data set constructed from register data maintained by Statistics Sweden, we examine childless women born in Sweden with at least one immigrant parent from 16 national backgrounds and investigate their transition to parenthood. We find that there is an overall adherence to a common pattern for the transition to first-time motherhood although nationality background does matter. The effects of various forms of participation and non-participation in the labor force do not vary greatly between those with immigrant background and the native Swedish-born. Among all sub-groups, we find a higher propensity to begin childbearing among those who are established in the labor market. The risk of having a first birth is reduced the most among students. Having parents of mixed nationality background is associated with reduced propensities to start childbearing. The similarity across different nationality groups supports the notion of integration and adjustment among second generation mothers to a Swedish fertility norm that most likely is supported by institutional factors, working through economic incentives, affecting all subgroups in a similar way.
- Economic History
European Population Conference, 2008