MPIDR Working Paper

How fertility and union stability interact in shaping new family patterns in Italy and Spain

Coppola, L., Di Cesare, M.
MPIDR Working Paper WP-2007-024, 28 pages.
Rostock, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research (June 2007)
Open Access


In this paper we investigate the interrelationships between fertility decisions and union dissolution in Italy and Spain. We argue that there might exist a spurious relationship between these two life trajectories. The analysis is based on the 1996 Fertility and Family Survey data for Italy and Spain. Results show that there is a spurious relationship between fertility and union dissolution in Italy but not in Spain. Nevertheless, in both countries, there is an evident direct effect of each process on the other: union dissolution decreases the risk of further childbearing, while childbirth decreases the risk of union dissolution.
Keywords: Italy, Spain, divorce rate, fertility
The Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research (MPIDR) in Rostock is one of the leading demographic research centers in the world. It's part of the Max Planck Society, the internationally renowned German research society.