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  • Project contributors: Berrington A, Stone J,

    This Project is part of the following research programme/s:

    Fertility and Family


    Many commentators assumed that fertility rates would fall in the context of the economic downturn following 2008. However, in the UK period fertility rates continued to increase (at least up until 2012) as they had done since 2000 and currently the UK has one of the highest levels of fertility within Europe. Although this persistent higher level of fertility is sometimes associated with recent high levels of net international migration to the UK, rates of childbearing among UK born women also increased during this period.

    This work examines the individual, family and macro-level factors driving childbearing trends in the UK.

    We address four main areas of research:

    Understanding Educational gradients in the timing and level of childbearing
    How does women's education influence whether they have children or not, how old they are when they have their first child and how many children they go on to have? How has this changed over time for mothers born between 1940 and 1969?
    Economic uncertainty and progression to first and second birth
    How are objective and subjective measures of economic uncertainty associated with progression to first and second birth? How do these effects differ by gender and level of education, and how they may be moderated by the broader neighbourhood context?
    Fertility patterns of recent UK immigrants
    What are the relationships between the migration event and the timing of childbearing among recent arrivals to the UK?
    Income, welfare, housing and progression to higher order births
    What have been the trends in progression to higher order births in the UK? How are income, benefit receipt and housing situation associated with progression to higher order births? Istheassociaton different for unpartnered and partnered women?
    This research makes use of three sources of life history data: the CPC GHS time series dataset; Understanding Society and the Office for National Statistics Longitudinal Study. Methods include demographic standardization, event history analyses and multilevel modelling of contextual data.

    Publications & Activities

    Income, welfare, housing and the transition to higher order births in the UK
    International Research and Policy Symposium on Family Changes and Housing Transitions in the Life Course (2017). (University of St Andrews)
    Authors: Berrington A,

    Did I forget to have children?' Understanding the Postponement of Childbearing and Childlessness from a Life Course Perspective.
    BSA Conference 2015: Societies in Transition: Progression or Regression? (2015). (Glasgow Caledonian University)
    Authors: Berrington A,

    Does perceived income adequacy matter for family formation? The role of subjective economic uncertainty for the transition to first and second births in the UK.
    BSA Conference 2015: Societies in Transition: Progression or Regression? (2015). (Glasgow Caledonian University)
    Authors: Stone J, Berrington A,

    Did I forget to have children? Understanding the postponement of childbearing and childlessness from a Life Course Perspective
    CLS Cohort Studies Research Conference 2015 (2015). (Institute of Education, University of London)
    Authors: Berrington A,