MPIDR Working Paper

Culture revisited: a geographic analysis of fertility decline in Prussia

Goldstein, J. R., Klüsener, S.
MPIDR Working Paper WP-2010-012, 31 pages.
Rostock, Max-Planck-Institut für demografische Forschung (Februar 2010)
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Open Access


In this paper, we re-introduce geography into the analysis of fertility decline in the first demographic transition in Europe. We reanalyze Galloway et al.'s (1994) Prussian data, fitting structural models similar to those of Galloway et al. to the data and to map the residuals. Our findings give evidence both of the predictive effect of economic as well as cultural variables. However, although testing different non-spatial model specifications, a significant unexplained geographic clustering of fertility decline always remains. Indeed, adjacency to an area of large fertility decline and location along communication and transport corridors seem to be important predictors of fertility decline beyond what one would expect from structural models. This gives support to the cultural diffusion hypothesis of the Princeton European Fertility Project.
Schlagwörter: Deutsches Reich, culture, diffusion of innovations, economics, fertility decline, spatial analysis
Das Max-Planck-Institut für demografische Forschung (MPIDR) in Rostock ist eines der international führenden Zentren für Bevölkerungswissenschaft. Es gehört zur Max-Planck-Gesellschaft, einer der weltweit renommiertesten Forschungsgemeinschaften.