Journal Article

Changes in the timing of first birth in East Germany after re-unification

Kreyenfeld, M. R.

Zeitschrift für Wirtschafts- und Sozialwissenschaften/Schmollers Jahrbuch, 120:2, 169-186 (2000)


When German re-unificatioin was accompanied by a rapid decline in aggregate fertility rates, researchers particularly assigned high umemployment rates a dominant role in the changes in fertility behavior. The aim of this paper is twofold. First, we investigate changes in the timing of first births in East Germany after re-unification. Using data from the SOEP, we show that even after re-unification East Germans are younger at first birth than their West German counterparts. Second, we investigate the relationship between male and female unemployment and first birth risks. A major result is that female unemployment encourages the transition into parenthood in East Germany. (AUTHOR)