21 Sep 2018

Recent Articles in Population Research and Policy Review RSS


Does it Take a Village? Migration among Rural South African Youth

Abstract

In a rural African context, the saying, “it takes a village to raise a child,” suggests that community characteristics are substantially important in children’s lives as they transit to adulthood. Are these contextual factors also related to youth migration? Demographers are uncertain about how community characteristics improve our understanding of an individual’s propensity to migrate, beyond individual and household factors. In many low- and middle-income country settings, youth become migrants for the first time in their lives to provide access to resources that their families need. We employ discrete-time event history models from 2003 to 2011 Agincourt Health and socio-Demographic Surveillance System in rural South Africa to test whether markers of development in a village are associated with the likelihood of youth and young adults migrating, distinguishing between becoming temporary and permanent migrants during this critical life cycle phase. We find that village characteristics indeed differentially predict migration, but not nearly as substantially as might be expected.


Kyne–Donner Model of Authority’s Recommendation and Hurricane Evacuation Decisions: A Study of Hypothetical Hurricane Event in the Rio Grande Valley, Texas

Abstract

Many previous studies identified factors influencing hurricane evacuation decisions by testing the protective action decision model (PADM). This study further examines factors that affect the trust in authority’s recommendation and evacuation decision-making in a proposed Kyne–Donner Model. The model provides an understanding of the predictive factors influencing evacuation decision-making through the mediating factor of trust in authority’s recommendation. This study takes advantage of the structural equation modeling method to simultaneously test multi-stages of the model. There are factors, namely, age, gender, education, household size, decision maker, risk area, house materials, hurricane evacuation experience, information seeking frequency, information seeking behavior, and information sources which influence trust in authority’s recommendation which, together with hurricane evacuation impediments, influence the hurricane evacuation decision. The study’s findings are consistent with the PADM and demonstrate the importance of trust in authority’s recommendation and hurricane evacuation decision-making.


From Motherhood Premium to Motherhood Penalty? Heterogeneous Effects of Motherhood Stages on Women’s Economic Outcomes in Urban China

Abstract

Chinese women have reached a high level of labor force participation before China’s deepening economic reform starting from the early 1990s, while women’s deteriorating position in the labor market has been documented in recent literature. However, few studies connect the relationship between the presence of children at different ages and women’s labor market outcomes. Capitalizing on longitudinal data, this study uses a person-fixed-effects model to investigate the relationship between motherhood stages and women’s economic outcomes in urban China. It takes into consideration the impact of children at various ages, as well as the impact of growth in local economies. We find that very young children inhibit mothers’ employment, but the presence of school-aged children is positively correlated with mothers’ income. Our analysis further suggests that, with the development of local economies, the negative association of very young children and women’s labor activity is exacerbated, while the positive relationship between school-aged children and mothers’ income is weakened. Our findings also contribute to the literature on labor market institutions, gender-role ideologies, and the impact on women’s economic outcomes as they balance work with childrearing obligations.


The Evolving and Complementary Impacts of Transportation Infrastructures on Population and Employment Change in the United States, 1970–2010

Abstract

Transportation infrastructures play an essential role in influencing population and employment change. While railroads, highways, and airports were constructed in different time periods, now they complement each other in terms of providing accessibility. This study uses county-level data to examine the impacts of the three forms of transportation infrastructure on population and employment change in the continental United States from 1970 to 2010. The findings suggest that transportation infrastructures play evolving but complementary roles in affecting population and employment change during the study period: railroads act as a distributive factor, highways take a facilitator role, and airports behave like growth poles. Diversification of the roles indicates that transportation infrastructures have evolved from a pure growth factor to an essential multifaceted development element of human society.


Armed Conflict and Fertility in Colombia, 2000–2010

Abstract

This paper looks at the association between the Colombian Armed Internal Conflict (AIC) and fertility for women in the first decade of the 21st century when the conflict underwent a strategic change after the escalation of armed action by outlaw groups and frontal response by the Colombian government. We fit a Poisson model that incorporates spatial and temporal information, using individual-level data from the Colombian Demographic and Health Surveys from 2000 to 2010 and novel information, for the Colombian case, on the number of armed actions. In rural areas, we find that the AIC had a significant positive association with fertility and non-significant relationship in urban areas, of any size with robust and consistent estimators. Two possible explanations may clarify these results for a long-term conflict such as that in Colombia: (i) women’s responses to higher mortality levels and (ii) the weakening of local institutions assumed to provide protection and health-related services to women. Other than the improvement of health-related services in areas affected by the conflict, we also suggest data collection on these latter conditions directly from the population involved to facilitate future research on the connection between conflicts and demographic outcomes.


Correction to: Subsequent Migration of Immigrants Within Australia, 1981–2016

The article Subsequent Migration of Immigrants Within Australia, 1981–2016, written by James Raymer and Bernard Baffour, was originally published electronically on the publisher’s internet portal (currently SpringerLink) on 31st July 2018 without open access. With the author(s)’ decision to opt for Open Choice the copyright of the article changed on August 2018 to © The Author(s) 2018 and the article is forthwith distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits use, duplication, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license and indicate if changes were made.


Is Local Social Development Associated with Workforce Composition? A Municipal Analysis of Mexico, 1990–2015

Abstract

A critical development goal involves reducing subsistence farming and encouraging entrepreneurship and formal sector employment. A growing number of studies examine cross-national variation in the rates of subsistence farming, marginal self-employment, formal employment, and prosperous entrepreneurship by level of development. However, despite significant regional disparities in development within most low-to-middle-income countries, little is known about how development at the local level is associated with labor market patterns. Using a pooled cross section containing four waves of data from the Mexican Census (1990–2015), this study investigates the relationship between social development and municipal workforce composition. In the 1980s, Mexico initiated an ambitious and multipronged development agenda intended to reduce extreme regional disparities in educational attainment, housing quality, access to utilities, and poverty. This study measures social development using a multi-dimensional measure that captures educational attainment, housing quality, access to utilities, and poverty. Laborers are separated into employed, own-account workers, and employers, with each category divided into agricultural and non-agricultural. In a second set of analyses, non-agricultural own-account workers are categorized as high and low growth potential and non-agricultural wage workers are separated into informal and formal sector. Results from fixed effects regression models indicate that local development significantly reduces the rate of own-account agricultural work and increases non-agricultural wage labor and employer self-employment. As less developed areas advance, the largest initial increase in non-agricultural work is in the informal sector. But, in more developed communities, social development increasingly predicts growth in formal sector employment and more selective entry into non-agricultural own-account work. The findings suggest that investment in community-level social development has the potential to reduce subsistence self-employment, encourage formal sector work, and promote entrepreneurship. Yet, the greatest gains occur in communities that already have mid to high levels of social development.


Smoking and Variation in the Hispanic Paradox: A Comparison of Low Birthweight Across 33 US States

Abstract

The Hispanic Paradox in birth outcomes is well documented for the US as a whole, but little work has considered geographic variation underlying the national pattern. This inquiry is important given the rapid growth of the Hispanic population and its geographic dispersion. Using birth records data from 2014 through 2016, we document state variation in birthweight differentials between US-born white women and the three Hispanic populations with the largest numbers of births: US-born Mexican women, foreign-born Mexican women, and foreign-born Central and South American women. Our analyses reveal substantial geographic variation in Hispanic immigrant–white low-birthweight disparities. For example, Hispanic immigrants in Southeastern states and in some states from other regions have reduced risk of low birthweight relative to whites, consistent with a “Hispanic Paradox.” A significant portion of Hispanic immigrants’ birthweight advantage in these states is explained by lower rates of smoking relative to whites. However, Hispanic immigrants have higher rates of low birthweight in California and several other Western states. The different state patterns are largely driven by geographic variation in smoking among whites, rather than geographic differences in Hispanic immigrants’ birthweights. In contrast, US-born Mexicans generally have similar or slightly higher odds of low birthweight than whites across the US. Overall, we show that the Hispanic Paradox in birthweight varies quite dramatically by state, driven by geographic variation in low birthweight among whites associated with white smoking disparities across states.


The Effect of Adult Children’s Working Hours on Visits to Elderly Parents: A Natural Experiment in Korea

Abstract

Despite its significant policy implications, little is known about the impact working hours have on how often workers visit their elderly parents. Evidence is particularly lacking on men’s overtime work and workers in Asia. We examine the causal impact of male workers’ working times on parental visits, using a natural experiment to eliminate potential endogeneity bias. In 2004, the Korean government began reducing its legal workweek from 44 to 40 h, gradually expanding it from larger to smaller establishments by 2011. Using annual longitudinal data from the 2005 to 2014 Korea Labor and Income Panel Study (N = 7005 person-waves), we estimated an instrumental variable (IV) fixed-effects (FE) regression model. Our IV was an indicator variable of whether an individual full-time worker’s legal workweek was reduced to 40 h in a given year. The results showed that working one additional hour a week lowered the frequency of visits by 6.5% (95% confidence interval [− 13.0%, 0.0%]), which was not apparent in a FE model without the IV. Working long hours has implications for workers’ interactions with their elderly parents, and the failure to consider endogeneity in actual working hours may understate the negative effect. Reducing work hours may serve as an effective policy intervention for improving the well-being of older adults in rapidly aging Asian countries in a work-oriented and family-centered culture. We also highlight the need for further attention to men’s work hours, which are often considered much less important than women’s work status in population research on intergenerational support.


Disparities in Children’s Family Experiences by Mother’s Socioeconomic Status: The Case of Finland

Abstract

A well-known argument claims that socioeconomic differentials in children’s family structures have become increasingly important in shaping child outcomes and the resources available to children in developed societies. One assumption is that differentials are comparatively small in Nordic welfare states. Our study examines how children’s experiences of family structures and family dynamics vary by their mother’s educational attainment in Finland. Based on register data on the childbearing and union histories of women in Finland born from 1969 onwards, we provide life-table estimates of children’s (N = 64,162) experiences of family dissolution, family formation, and family structure from ages 0–15 years, stratified by mother’s education level at the child’s birth. We find huge socioeconomic disparities in children’s experiences of family structures and transitions. Compared to children of highly educated mothers, children of mothers with low levels of education are almost twice as likely to be born in cohabitation and four times as likely to be born to a lone mother. They are also much more likely to experience further changes in family structure—particularly parental separation. On average, children of low-educated mothers spend just half of their childhood years living with both their parents, whereas those of high-educated mothers spend four-fifths of their childhood with both parents. The sociodemographic inequalities among children in Nordic welfare states clearly deserve more scholarly attention.


SNAP Benefits and Pregnancy-Related Emergency Room Visits

Abstract

Pregnant women are likely to be sensitive to daily fluctuations in nutritional intake. To see if income constraints at the end of the month limit food consumption and trigger health problems, we examine how the date that benefits are issued for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) changes the probability that a woman will go to the Emergency Room (ER) for pregnancy-related conditions using administrative data from SNAP and Medicaid from Missouri for 2010–2013. SNAP benefits in Missouri are distributed from the 1st through the 22nd day of the month based on the birth month and the first letter of the last name of the head of the household, making timing of SNAP issuance exogenous. We estimate probit models of the calendar month and SNAP benefit month on the probability of a pregnancy-related ER visit for women age 17–45, or the sample at risk of being pregnant. We also examine the relationship between SNAP benefit levels and ER visits. We found that women who received SNAP benefits in the second or third week of the calendar month were less likely to receive pregnancy-related care through the ER in the week following benefit receipt. Results suggest that SNAP benefits might be related to patterns of pregnancy-related medical care accessed through the ER. Since SNAP issuance date is within state control in the United States, states may want to consider the health effects of their choice.


Business Cycles, Medicaid Generosity, and Birth Outcomes

Abstract

Birth outcomes influence many aspects of later life health and wellbeing, making healthcare access during pregnancy a policy priority. Low-income mothers often depend on Medicaid, for which eligibility is determined by their income relative to state eligibility thresholds. The prevalence of adverse birth outcomes is known to exhibit cyclical variation, due in part to changes in the composition of women giving birth in response to changing economic conditions. However, cyclical variation in adverse birth outcomes also varies with respect to Medicaid eligibility thresholds. Our analysis uses birth-records data for 2000 through 2013, aggregated into 173,936 county-by-quarter observations and linked to county-level unemployment rates and state-level parental Medicaid thresholds. Using fixed-effects negative binomial models, we examine the role of Medicaid generosity in influencing birth outcomes across business cycles. We test for interactions between Medicaid and unemployment, hypothesizing that the negative effects of recessions are worse where Medicaid thresholds are more restrictive. We find that higher Medicaid generosity dampens the negative effects of recessions on birth outcomes. The extent to which Medicaid interacts with unemployment also varies according to the age and race composition of mothers; in particular, Black mothers are both most affected by unemployment and most responsive to Medicaid generosity. Given current concerns about racial gaps in both infant and maternal mortality, our findings suggest that Medicaid may be an important feature of a strategy to close gaps in the prevalence of adverse birth outcomes across racial groups, especially during bust years.


Changing Life Expectancy and Health Expectancy Among Russian Adults: Results from the Past 20 Years

Abstract

The decade following the collapse of the Soviet Union was characterized by wide fluctuations in Russian mortality rates, but since the early 2000s, life expectancy has improved progressively. Recent upturns in longevity have promoted policy debates over extending the retirement age in the country. However, whether observed gains in life expectancy are accompanied by improving health remains to be addressed. Using data from the 1994–2014 Russian Longitudinal Monitoring Survey of the Higher School of Economics, this study investigates trends over 20 years in healthy life expectancy (HLE) and illness-free life expectancy (IFLE) for men and women at adult ages. Analyses using the Sullivan method show that men and women at adult ages have experienced large increases in health expectancies during the post-Soviet period. Increases in HLE exceeded increases in total life expectancy for both genders. Further, health expectancies have evolved over time through cycles of increases and decreases, just like life expectancy. These results suggest increases in good-quality years among men and women at working ages, offering support for changing the official retirement age. The extent of the change in the retirement age, however, needs to be carefully considered, given that, despite recent improvements, the health expectancy of the Russian population still remains low.


A Few Good Men and Women: Gender, Race, and Status in the Wartime Volunteer Military

Abstract

Much is known about the men who entered the US military during draft era wars and the peacetime volunteer era. Relatively less is known about those who turned 18 during the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Journalists, advocates, and politicians have expressed concern that wartime volunteer service has been inequitable. Yet there is apparently only one peer-reviewed article that explores the socioeconomic characteristics of the men who came of age after the start of the recent wars, and none that evaluate how race and status of female recruits varied. To assess these questions, the following article develops a theoretical model building on the status attainment and life course traditions. It uses data from the Educational Longitudinal Study of 2002, which contains information about a national sample of people who became eligible to join the armed forces during the height of the wartime volunteer era. It does not find evidence that low-status and minority men were disproportionately likely to enlist. Indeed, those with low-status were less likely to do so, partly because they were excluded by military standards. Men were particularly unlikely to join the armed forces, however, if they grew up in high-status rather than families in the middle of the status distribution. By contrast, women were most likely to join the armed forces if they came from the lower-middle than from anywhere else in the status distribution. Minority men were no more likely than white men to enlist, but black women were disproportionately likely to join the military.


Who Goes to College, Military, Prison, or Long-Term Unemployment? Racialized School-to-Labor Market Transitions Among American Men

Abstract

This paper analyzes the selection processes behind post-schooling transitions into college enrollment, military service, long-term unemployment, and incarceration relative to civilian employment, examining to what extent these processes are racialized. Rather than analyzing a complete set of alternatives, previous research typically focuses on a limited set of these alternatives at a time, and rarely accounts for incarceration or long-term unemployment. Using individual-level panel data on the first post-high school transition from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth 1997 Cohort, results show that white men experience positive transitions (college enrollment and military service) at higher rates and for longer periods than black men, who experience negative transitions (long-term unemployment and incarceration) at higher rates for longer periods than whites. Competing risk Cox regression analyses reveal that blacks’ transitions are polarized, showing that blacks in the upper distributions of standardized test scores and socioeconomic status are more likely to pursue a college education relative to their white counterparts, whereas blacks in the bottom of the standardized test score and socioeconomic status distribution are more likely to experience negative transitions than whites. Unlike prior research finding that military service provided “bridging careers” for racial minorities, black men are no longer more likely to join the military than whites. Instead, blacks now face a much higher risk of incarceration. Implications for intra-generational mobility and changing opportunity structures for racial minorities are discussed.


Mortality Among Veterans and Non-veterans: Does Type of Health Care Coverage Matter?

Abstract

Recent studies examine veteran status differences in mortality, but none consider heterogeneity in military-veteran health care coverage. We use data from the 1997–2009 (2011) National Health Interview Survey-Linked Mortality Files (N = 624,610) to estimate Cox regression models of the association between veteran status and mortality taking into account the type of military-veteran health care coverage and sex/gender. Descriptive analyses provide further evidence that veterans who only use Veterans Affairs (VA) health care services are a distinctly disadvantaged subpopulation with substantially increased mortality risk. Results from multivariate analyses confirm a veteran mortality disadvantage, reveal that this disadvantage varies by type of military-veteran health coverage, and demonstrate that the disadvantage is largely but not totally explained by demographic, socioeconomic, and health status differences between groups. Results further indicate that the veteran mortality disadvantage is most pronounced among male veterans who only use VA health care or who have no military-veteran health coverage, respectively, relative to male non-veterans with no military-veteran health care coverage. There is a mortality disadvantage among female veterans who have no military-veteran health care coverage, and a mortality advantage among female non-veterans with military-veteran health care coverage, relative to female non-veterans with no military-veteran health care. Based on these findings, we argue that in order to fully understand veteran status differences in morbidity and mortality, future studies must move beyond the analysis of veteran- and VA-only samples, and should take into account variable connections of subpopulations to the military, resultant differences in types of health care coverage, and sex/gender.


Editors’ Introduction


Military Veterans and Neighborhood Racial Integration: VA Mortgage Lending Across Three Eras

Abstract

The military has long been seen as an avenue for increasing racial equality for minorities, especially black Americans. In this article, we examine to what extent military veterans also experience residential integration by looking at neighborhood residential outcomes for black and white men utilizing the popular Veterans Affairs (VA) loan program to purchase a home. We draw on data from the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act (HMDA) to examine residential integration among white and black veteran homebuyers compared to homebuyers utilizing conventional loans over three major lending eras: 1990s, 2000–2007, and 2008–2015. By 2015, a quarter of all home purchase mortgages loans to black men were VA loans even though veterans made up only a tenth of the adult black male population. In our multivariate analyses, we uncover a sizeable combined swing toward neighborhood minority-white integration, 14.4% points, among black and white veterans who use VA loans. Compared to those with conventional loans, black veterans live in neighborhoods with 10% points fewer minorities and, white veterans, 4.4% points fewer whites. Our results illustrate how racial integration in the US military has the potential to foster lasting housing integration among veterans.


Veteran Status, Income, and Intergenerational Mobility Across Three Cohorts of American Men

Abstract

Existing research linking prior military employment with labor market outcomes has focused on comparing the relative income of veterans and nonveterans. However, people who join the armed forces are uniquely selected from the broader population, and the form and direction of selectivity has shifted over time, with differential enlistment rates by race, region, and socioeconomic status. Understanding changes in the demographic composition of enlistees and veterans has significant import for the study of social mobility, particularly given changes in the occupational structure since the mid-twentieth century and wage stagnation well into the new millennium. Furthermore, labor market polarization and increases in educational attainment since WWII raise additional concerns about the social origins of military personnel and their occupational trajectories after discharge. Using data from the National Longitudinal Surveys, we investigate how social background is linked to both income and occupational mobility among veterans from three cohorts of American men: World War II, Vietnam, and the All-Volunteer Force. We find few benefits for veterans, for either income or intergenerational occupational mobility, once social background is controlled, suggesting that selection into the armed forces largely governs outcomes in the civilian labor market. Our findings have significant importance for understanding civilian labor market outcomes and trajectories of social mobility during distinct phases of military staffing.


Subsequent Migration of Immigrants Within Australia, 1981–2016

Abstract

Australia is a major immigration country and immigrants currently represent around 28% of the total population. The aim of this research is to understand the long-term consequences of this immigration and, particularly, how migrants respond to opportunities within the country after arriving through the process of subsequent (internal) migration. The focus is on major immigrant groups in Australia, including persons born in the United Kingdom, New Zealand, China and India, and how their patterns differ from persons born in Australia. To conduct this analysis, we have gathered data for a 35-year period based on quinquennial census data. We also obtained birthplace-specific mortality data for constructing multiregional life tables for the immigrant populations. Subsequent migration is important for understanding population redistribution, and the relative attractiveness of destinations within host countries. Our results highlight the importance of subsequent migration and the diversity of migration behaviours amongst different immigrant groups in the context of overall declines in internal migration since 1981.