The growing recognition that educational attainment is one of the strongest preventive factors for adult health and longevity has fueled an interest in educational attainment as a population health strategy. However, less attention has been given to identifying social, economic, and behavioral resources that may moderate the health and longevity benefits of education. We draw on theories of resource substitution and multiplication to examine the extent to which the education–mortality association is contingent on other resources (marriage, employment, income, healthy lifestyles). We use data on adults aged 30–84 in the 1997–2006 National Health Interview Survey Linked Mortality File and estimate discrete-time event history models stratified by gender (N = 146,558; deaths = 10,399). We find that the mortality benefits of education are generally largest for adults—especially women—who have other resources such as employment and marriage, supporting the theory of resource multiplication. Nonetheless, our results also imply that other resources can potentially attenuate the mortality disadvantages (advantages) associated with low (high) levels of education. The findings suggest that efforts to improve population health and longevity by raising education levels should be augmented with strategies that assure widespread access to social, economic, and behavioral resources.
How does female out-migration reconfigure gender values surrounding son preference in origin communities? We propose that the feminization of migration has the potential to infuse origin communities with economic and ideational changes that may challenge son preference. Rural China provides an interesting setting, both because its unprecedented labor out-migration has increasingly included women and because of its persistent son preference. Using data from rural China and instrumental variable regressions to adjust for potential endogeneity bias, this study shows that out-migration of women, but not of men, attenuates son preference among those in origin communities. The role of female out-migration transcends families with direct ties to migration and extends to the entire village. However, cultural context and family positions within that context condition the role of female migration: specifically, the preferences of individuals in families and villages embedded in strong patrilineal cultural practices are less likely to be shaped by female out-migration.
We use a stepfamily formation perspective to study two dimensions of the family life course following the dissolution of a first marriage. First, we examine how the presence of children from a prior union and the custody arrangements of those children influence the process of repartnering. In doing so, we extend the traditional explanations of union formation in terms of needs, attractiveness, and opportunities by taking into account the parental status of the new partners and a detailed classification of the custody arrangement of the children. Next, we investigate the likelihood of childbearing within those post-separation unions with a particular emphasis on the prior parental status of both partners. By studying post-separation union formation and fertility behavior together, we get a more complete depiction of stepfamily formation especially in their more complex forms. Our analyses are based on survey data for 2077 divorced men and 2384 divorced women collected in the Divorce in Flanders study. The results show that compared with other divorcees, full-time residential parents are the least likely to start a new union following separation and that parents are more likely to start a union with another parent than with a childless partner. Several of our results suggest that parenthood may not be a particularly attractive status on the partner market. Potential partners without children themselves appear especially reluctant to assume a (residential) step parental role. In contrast with the results for union formation, it is not the custody arrangement of the child(ren) but parental status itself that predicts childbearing within higher order unions. Our findings are important from a policy perspective as they stress the consequences of gender-neutral childrearing patterns following divorce for the repartnering of women after separation.
Overall, children born to teen parents experience disadvantaged cognitive achievement at school entry compared with children born to older parents. However, within this population, there is variation, with a significant fraction of teen parents’ children acquiring adequate preparation for school entry during early childhood. We ask whether the family background of teen parents explains this variation. We use data on children born to teen mothers from three waves of the Early Childhood Longitudinal Study-Birth Cohort (N ~ 700) to study the association of family background with children’s standardized reading and mathematics achievement scores at kindergarten entry. When neither maternal grandparent has completed high school, children’s scores on standardized assessments of math and reading achievement are one-quarter to one-third of a standard deviation lower compared with families where at least one grandparent finished high school. This association is net of teen mothers’ own socioeconomic status in the year prior to children’s school entry.
Latino immigrant adolescents have the highest high school dropout rates of any race-ethnic or nativity group in the United States. One potential reason for high dropout rates among Latino immigrant youth is that many are unauthorized entrants. These unauthorized Latino immigrant youth have few opportunities to attend college, and, as they become aware of barriers to their educational progress and employment, they may lower their educational expectations. Using data from the Latino adolescent migration, health, and adaptation project (N = 275), we examine the association of unauthorized entry into the U.S. with the educational expectations of Latino immigrant youth. We find that adolescents entering the U.S. without authorization have lower educational expectations than those who enter with authorization. These differences in their expectations persist after controlling for differences in their pre-migration, migration, and post-migration experiences. Policies and programs that reduce barriers to higher education and labor market opportunities can potentially help to foster higher educational expectations among unauthorized immigrant youth and may promote their high school completion.
Over the last decade, the expansion of microfinance institutions (MFIs) has dramatically shifted the availability of credit across the developing world. This recent development provides an opportunity to examine the relationship between household labor migration and access to and use of formal credit. Both theories of migration and the expectations of formal credit providers have suggested that labor migration and credit are substitute solutions to the demand for capital in the developing world, with the implication that greater access to formal financial services may stem migration out of rural places. Using household survey data from Cambodia, an MFI-saturated country, we find that households using formal credit and households with greater access to formal credit are more likely to have labor migrants than households without access. This association persists across size of loan, purpose of loan, remittances behavior, and for domestic migrations. These findings complicate our understanding of the relationship between credit and migration, and call for a greater recognition of the importance of context in framing migration behavior.
Asian American men and women have been largely neglected in previous studies of romantic relationship formation and status. Using data from the first and fourth waves of the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent to Adult Health (Add Health), we examine romantic and sexual involvement among young adults, most of whom were between the ages of 25 and 32 (N = 11,555). Drawing from explanations that focus on structural and cultural elements as well as racial hierarchies, we examine the factors that promote and impede involvement in romantic/sexual relationships. We use logistic regression to model current involvement of men and women separately and find, with the exception of Filipino men, Asian men are significantly less likely than white men to be currently involved with a romantic partner, even after controlling for a wide array of characteristics. Our results suggest that the racial hierarchy framework best explains lower likelihood of involvement among Asian American men.
In multistate populations, the rates of interstate transfer cannot generally be determined from the size and composition of the populations at the beginning and end of a time interval. With N living states, the population data give only N equations to determine the N 2 possible rates. Here, the QERT (quadratic estimation of rates of transfer) approach is advanced that allows the transfer rates to be estimated when the products of selected pairs of rates can be assumed constant. The solution can be written in closed form and, for N living states, involves no more than N−1 quadratic equations. Compared to the leading alternative approaches, QERT provides very similar numerical estimates, while yielding the underlying behavioral rates, having flexible input requirements, accommodating all structural zeros, and reproducing the exact solution when interstate transfers are strictly hierarchical. The QERT approach is applied to construct labor force life tables for U.S. men and women for 2005–2010. The results show that labor force participation differences between men and women have continued to narrow, and that the QERT approach can generate robust worklife estimates. QERT thus provides new opportunities for demographic analysis in the absence of direct data on behavioral rates.
Research on family structure and child well-being rarely includes children in same-sex parent families, a notable omission since 28 % of female–female couple households contain children. Using the 2010–2013 pooled current population survey (CPS), we examined children’s economic well-being by family structure. These data were ideal for this study because they included a sizeable number of children in same-sex cohabiting mother families and the CPS measured both official and supplemental poverty, incorporating the cohabiting partner. Using the official poverty measure, children in same-sex cohabiting mother families were more likely to be poor than their counterparts in either different-sex cohabiting or married parent families. Using the supplemental poverty measure, children in same-sex mother families were no more likely to be poor than children in all other types of different-sex two-parent families.
The term “gentrification” carries conflicting popular connotations, conjuring images of both revitalization and displacement. Despite a rich critical literature from urban social scientists, gentrification as it relates to rural housing and rural development is a similarly conflicted term. With the frequent conflation of rural gentrification and economic improvement, researchers and policy-makers alike need more nuanced techniques for identifying how the process distributes costs and benefits across households. This paper operationalizes rural gentrification as a specific demographic pattern of household migration, termed the “Rural Gentrification Score,” and maps its footprint between 1980 and 2000 in 25 US states. It then uses census data to better understand the impacts of rural gentrification on home values in rural counties, interrogating the popular notion that homeowners benefit from gentrification. Using comparative analyses, two related hypotheses about rural gentrification and inequality are explored: (1) that gentrified rural counties were susceptible to greater home value segregation and (2) that over time gentrification’s spread culminated in greater homogeneity of home values. Results support each of these hypotheses and point to nuances in the relationship between population turnover, inequality, and socioeconomic context. Most notably the findings highlight a spatial and temporal pattern of widening wealth inequality in gentrifying rural counties.
Subpopulations have variable connections to specific institutions, such as the military, which can influence their use of social programs and access to resources. We use data from the 5-year (2008–2012) American Community Survey (ACS) public-use file to examine current Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) use by military service status: active-duty personnel, recent veterans, long-term veterans, and reserve/guard members. Overall and by military service status, we estimate weighted descriptive statistics and multivariate logistic regression models that include demographic and socioeconomic controls. We document low but non-trivial levels of participation among active-duty personnel (2.2 %), higher but still moderate levels of SNAP use among veterans (7.1 % for recent veterans and 6.5 % for long-term veterans), and the highest level of use among members of the reserve/guard (9.0 %). Multivariate analyses support hypotheses based on the potential for the military, as a total institution, to substantially reduce use of SNAP among active-duty personnel, while veterans and reservists, who are more distal from food-related institutional resources, have higher likelihoods of using SNAP. Although levels of SNAP use among active-duty personnel, veterans, and reservists are lower than those observed in the national population, which includes those with no direct connection to military institutions, findings suggest that leaving active-duty military service results in a substantial and relatively immediate reduction in food-related resources for many recent veterans and their families. We discuss the implications of the findings for policy, limitations of the research, and directions for future research.
Recent fertility declines in non-Western countries may have the potential to transform gender systems. One pathway for such transformations is the creation of substantial proportions of families with children of only one gender. Such families, particularly those with only daughters, may facilitate greater symmetry between sons and daughters. This article explores whether such shifts may influence gendered expectations of old age support. In keeping with patriarchal family systems, old age support is customarily provided by sons, but not daughters, in India. Using data from the 2005 Indian Human Development Survey, I find that women with sons overwhelmingly expect old age support from a son. By contrast, women with only daughters largely expect support from a daughter or a source besides a child. These findings suggest that fertility decline may place demographic pressure on gendered patterns of old age support and the gender system more broadly.
The American Community Survey (ACS) has been fully implemented since 2005. The Census Bureau has released four 5-year datasets, the most geographically detailed dataset. Yet, government agencies still grapple with how to use the multiple datasets and estimates. The Census Bureau publishes guidelines for their use, emphasizing the need to balance timeliness and precision in choosing an estimate and encouraging the use of the margin of error. This study examines how three federal agencies use the ACS to implement programs to understand whether the published guidelines address the issues of importance to government agencies. These programs all use income data from the ACS, but for different ends: eligibility criteria, evaluation of federal guideline implementation, and allocation of funds among urban areas. After reviewing agency publications, studying changes in policy, and conducting personal interviews with officials, we find that the agencies consider not only precision and timeliness when choosing an estimate, but also statutory requirements, computational limitations, and geographic needs. Federal agencies are cognizant that these estimates are subject to error, but find that the margin of error adds complexity that does not necessarily result in better implementation of programs. The ACS offers users multiple dataset choices, with varying degrees of reliability, to estimate population characteristics. Current Census Bureau guidelines for the ACS do not meet the needs of many government agencies, as federal statutes are not designed with the current survey methodology in mind.
Population projections commonly suffer from a decreasing accuracy with a higher degree of disaggregation. We suggest combining the cohort-component model and an averaged projection technique to improve precision of forecasts for small areas. Calculating ex-post population projections, we evaluate the precision and bias of the proposed method by contrasting error patterns of commonly used techniques using official population data from 46 districts of a German state for the years 1980–2013. In comparison to the individual methods considered, the combined approach results in the highest accuracy and lowest bias both for the total population and for age groups. The proposed method is also more robust regarding past growth.
The American Community Survey (ACS) multiyear estimation program has greatly advanced opportunities for studying change in the demographic and socioeconomic characteristics of U.S. communities. Challenges remain, however, for researchers studying years prior to the full implementation of the ACS or areas smaller than the thresholds for ACS annual estimates (i.e., small counties and census tracts). We evaluate intercensal estimates of the demographic and socioeconomic characteristics of U.S. counties and census tracts produced via linear interpolation between the 2000 census and both the 2010 census and 2005–2009 ACS. Discrepancies between interpolated estimates and reference estimates from the Population Estimates Program, the Small Area Income and Poverty Estimates, and ACS are calculated using several measures of error. Findings are discussed in relation to the potential for measurement error to bias longitudinal estimates of linearly interpolated neighborhood change, and alternative intercensal estimation models are discussed, including those that may better capture non-linear trends in economic conditions over the 21st century.
Migrants from Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) move from a region with high fertility to regions with low fertility. Yet very few studies have examined the reproductive behavior of international migrants from SSA. This study examines the roles of origin and destination socialization on the fertility and fertility ideals of SSA migrants in France. The study draws on measures of assimilation to systematically examine the effects of socialization and adaptation as well as transnationalism for the effects of sustained origin ties. Data are from the TEO (“Trajectoires et Origines”) survey conducted in France (2008/2009). Logistic regression is used to examine current fertility (the odds of having a birth in the preceding 5 years), and poisson regression is used to examine cumulative fertility (children ever born) and fertility ideals (reported ideal number of children in a family). Controlling for sociodemographic factors, first-generation SSA migrants have higher fertility than second-generation SSA migrants and non-immigrants. But first- and second-generation SSA migrants have higher fertility ideals than non-immigrants. Among SSA migrants, first- and second-generation migrants do not differ in fertility and fertility ideals when adaptation is accounted for. Most measures of adaptation are negatively associated with actual fertility and fertility ideals. Transnationalism is associated with higher fertility ideals but less so with actual fertility. The study finds some evidence for origin socialization, but the findings are more strongly supportive of adaptation to the host society. Origin socialization appears to have a stronger influence on fertility ideals than actual fertility.
Few studies investigate the influence of husbands’ or others’ fertility preferences on women’s abortion behavior, in spite of longstanding recognition that women are seldom the sole decision-makers governing reproductive behavior. This study uses survey data detailing women’s reproductive histories in Madhya Pradesh, India to analyze the role of women’s fertility preferences, their perceptions of their husbands’ and in-laws’ preferences, and empowerment in two aspects of abortion behavior: the decision to attempt an abortion (n = 8852 pregnancies) and to seek a surgical abortion with a medical provider (n = 752 abortion attempts). The latter is estimated using a Heckman’s selection model. Women are most likely to attempt an abortion and to do so via surgical abortion when they and their husbands agree that they do not want another child. Husbands’ fertility preferences exercise a strong, independent effect on both outcomes, while the effect of in-laws’ preferences is weaker. However, the strongest influence on abortion behavior is women’s own fertility preferences: the odds of attempting abortion decrease by a factor of 0.06 (p value <0.001) among women who wanted a pregnancy compared to those who did not. The magnitude of this effect does not diminish when controlling for others’ fertility preferences. Restrictions on women’s mobility increase the odds of attempting an abortion, but significantly reduce the odds of a surgical abortion.
While recent national discussions of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) made the introduction of mandated contraceptive coverage within health insurance policies seem like a novel idea, it is not new at all. Since the late 1990s, 29 states have mandated that insurance providers include prescription contraceptive supplies and, in some instances, associated contraceptive services in their coverage. We use state-level policy variation to generate both difference-in-differences and triple difference estimates to determine if women in states with state-level contraception supply or contraception supply and services insurance mandates experienced changes in their utilization of contraception and preventive health care services. We find a positive relationship between these policies and prescription contraception use for those with low educational attainment, but the results are not robust to a variety of specifications. Our results also show an increase in the consumption of preventive health services for women with low educational attainment as a result of these health insurance mandates. We conclude by discussing the implications for the ACA.
As childhood overweight and obesity, especially its cohort component, can be viewed as the leading edge of future changes in the population prevalence of obesity, scholars are concerned about what temporal effects drive the rise of childhood overweight/obesity prevalence worldwide. Using eight waves of the China Health and Nutrition Survey from 1989 to 2009, this research conducts hierarchical age–period–cohort analyses to investigate temporal patterns of the rising overweight/obesity prevalence for children and youth aged 2–25 in the world’s most populous country. We find that the age trajectory of overweight/obesity reaches a nadir around age 14 and 15 and increases afterwards. Children and youth are more likely to be overweight/obese in the most recent period of observation, and this pattern is persistent across different socio-demographic groups. Moreover, a statistically significant cohort component is detected for the overall population and further analyses reveal that this cohort increase is mainly restricted to males. Demonstrating distinct age, period, and cohort components embedded in the rise of childhood overweight/obesity in China, this research lends support to the global epidemic of obesity and calls attention to a new phase of the Epidemiologic Transition in China.
The housing search process is an overlooked mechanism in the scholarly research that seeks to understand the causes of persistent racial residential segregation in the United States. Past research has explored in detail the preferences people hold in terms of the racial and ethnic composition of their neighborhoods, and more recently some have also examined the correspondence between racial and ethnic neighborhood preferences and current neighborhood racial/ethnic composition. But an intermediate stage—the racial/ethnic composition of where people search—has not been investigated. We analyze a subsample (n = 382) from the 2004–2005 Chicago Area Study to demonstrate the value of systematically studying the matches—or mismatches—between preferences, search locations, and neighborhood outcomes. We find that for whites, not only their current neighborhoods but also the neighborhoods in which they search for housing have larger percentages of whites than they say they prefer. In contrast, blacks—and to a lesser extent Latinos—search in neighborhoods that correspond to their preferences, but reside in neighborhoods with a larger percentage own group. Logistic regression analyses reveal that mismatches are associated with both a lack of information and inadequate finances, but also may be due to socially desirable responding for whites in particular. Our results provide suggestive evidence of the importance of unpacking the search process more generally and draw attention to what are likely to be productive new future data collection efforts as well as an area potentially ripe for policy interventions.