Archive for the 'Children, Families, and Reproductive Health' Category

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Robert Putnam On Growing Up Poor

An article in Wonkblog explores Robert Putnam’s new book Our Kids: The American Dream in Crisis and the influence he has had on politicians as diverse as President Obama and congressman Paul Ryan.

From the article:

For the past three years, Putnam has been nursing an outlandish ambition. He wants inequality of opportunity for kids to be the central issue in the 2016 presidential election. Not how big government should be or what the “fair share” is for the wealthy, but what’s happening to children boxed out of the American dream.

His manifesto, “ Our Kids: The American Dream in Crisis” will be published Tuesday. It places brain science, sociology and census data alongside stories of children growing up on both sides of the divide. Many of the findings draw on the work of other researchers who have long studied families, education or neuroscience. But Putnam has gathered up these strands under a single thesis: that instead of talking about inequality of wealth or income among adults, we ought to focus on inequalities in all of the ways children accumulate — or never touch — opportunity.

The Economics of Unplanned Pregnancies

Christopher Ingraham of Wonkblog examines a new report from the Guttmacher Institute showing that unintended pregnancies cost the U.S. $21 billion each year:

Nationally there were 1.5 million unplanned births in 2010. Public insurance programs like Medicaid paid for 68 percent of those births. “On average, a publicly funded birth cost $12,770 in prenatal care, labor and delivery, postpartum care and the first 12 months of infant care; care for months 13–60 cost, on average, another $7,947, for a total cost per birth of $20,716,” the study found.

Guttmacher Institute report, Public Costs from Unintended Pregnancies and the Role of Public Insurance Programs in Paying for Pregnancy-Related Care: National and State Estimates for 2010 (PDF)

Japan’s Fertility Is Worse than Predicted

Via Wonkblog

Japan population shrank by 268,000 in 2014, the largest reduction on record, and the government has done a terrible job at predicting it’s fertility rate.

Wonkblog post
The article is based on a WINPEC Working Paper, “Aging and Deation from a Fiscal Perspective” (PDF).

Age Gaps for Second Marriages

The Pew Research Center analyzed data from the 2013 American Community Survey and discovered the cliche is true: a man is more likely to marry much a younger woman the second time around.

Read the full article

Growing Numbers of Americans Are Remarrying

Four-in-Ten Couples are Saying “I Do,” Again
By Gretchen Livingston
Source: Pew Research Social & Demographic Trends

In 2013, fully four-in-ten new marriages included at least one partner who had been married before, and two-in-ten new marriages were between people who had both previously stepped down the aisle, according to a Pew Research Center analysis of newly released data from the U.S. Census Bureau.

Complete Report (PDF)

See also:
“The New American Family” in the ISR Sampler and Pam Smock’s interview on Stateside about the changing American Family

Expansion of Free Lunch Could Have a Negative Effect on Research Data

By: Ben Wieder
Source: FiveThirtyEight

A new federal initiative that could provide millions of students with a free lunch might have an unexpected cost for researchers and state educational agencies.

“It’s obviously good for kids, but from a pure data perspective it provides some weaknesses,” said Brandon LeBeau, an assistant professor at the University of Iowa’s College of Education who has studied the use of free lunch eligibility in education research.

Read the full story

2 or More Children Raises Productivity, At Least For Academic Economists

By Ylan Q. Mui
Source: Wonkblog

A word of encouragement for my working moms: You are actually more productive than your childless peers.

That’s the conclusion of a recent study from the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, which found that over the course of a 30-year career, mothers outperformed women without children at almost every stage of the game. In fact, mothers with at least two kids were the most productive of all.

Full story on Wonkblog
Parenthood and Productivity of Highly Skilled Labor, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis Working Paper

The Economics of Parenting

By: Roberto A. Ferdman
Source: Wonkblog (Washington Post)

Strict parents — the sort who practice an authoritarian form of parenting that restricts children’s choices — are more common in countries with high inequality, according to a study by the National Bureau of Economic Research. The study used the World Value Survey to measure whether parents in different countries care more about qualities desired by stricter parents, like “hard work” and “obedience,” or qualities desired more by passive parents, like “imagination” and “independence.

It found that the more unequal a society, the more likely people were to favor strict parenting.

Wonkblog post
NBER Working Paper (PDF)

Never-Married Adults Is at a Record High

Via: Pew Research
By: Wendy Wang and Kim Parker

After decades of declining marriage rates and changes in family structure, the share of American adults who have never been married is at an historic high. In 2012, one-in-five adults ages 25 and older (about 42 million people) had never been married, according to a new Pew Research Center analysis of census data. In 1960, only about one-in-ten adults (9%) in that age range had never been married. Men are more likely than women to have never been married (23% vs. 17% in 2012). And this gender gap has widened since 1960, when 10% of men ages 25 and older and 8% of women of the same age had never married.

Report summary
Complete Report (PDF)

Also read NPR’s Code Switch coverage of the report.

Fewer Marriages, More Divergence: Marriage Projections for Millennials to Age 40

By: Steven Martin, Nan Astone, Elizabeth Peters
Source: Urban Institute

Abstract:

Declining marriage rates suggest a growing fraction of millennials will remain unmarried through age 40. In this brief, we use data from the American Community Survey to estimate age-specific marriage rates and project the percentage of millennials who will marry by age 40 in different scenarios. We find that the percentage of millennials marrying by age 40 will fall lower than for any previous generation of Americans, even in a scenario where marriage rates recover considerably. Moreover, marriage patterns will continue to diverge by education and race, increasing the divides between mostly married “haves” and increasingly single “have-nots”.

Download full report