Book Chapter

Modes of childcare and the difficult compatibility of childrearing and employment in (western) Germany

Hank, K., Kreyenfeld, M. R.
In: Dorbitz, J., Otto, J. (Eds.): Familienpolitik und Familienstrukturen: Ergebnisse der gemeinsamen Jahrestagung der Deutschen Gesellschaft für Bevölkerungswissenschaft und der Johann-Peter-Süßmilch-Gesellschaft für Demographie, Berlin, 21.-23. Juni 2001, 95–108
Materialien zur Bevölkerungswissenschaft 108
Wiesbaden, Bundesinstitut für Bevölkerungsforschung beim Statistischen Bundesamt (BiB) (2002)


This paper analyzes the relationship between children´s day care and fertility in Germany. First, different modes of childcare are discussed with regard to their availability and costs. We then estimate the impact of having access to public day care and care in social networks on first birth probabilities of western German women in the 1980s and 1990s. The empirical analysis does not reveal any statistically significant effect of childcare availability on fertility. We conclude that the overall institutional constraints of day care in (western) Germany prevent the compatibility of childrearing and employment, thereby forcing women to choose between a continuous employment career or motherhood.
Keywords: Germany, fertility
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