Stefanie König
Higher order births in Germany and Hungary. Comparing the determinants of fertility intentions in a national context

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Mannheimer Zentrum für Europäische Sozialforschung: Arbeitspapiere; 146
ISSN: 1437-8574

This study examines fertility intentions for second or higher order births in Germany and Hungary. Fertility intention can be described on several levels: the individual level, the partner level and the country level. From an economic point of view, the wish to get more than one child is determined by opportunity costs of women and direct costs for children. Opportunity costs depend on their human capital and can be mediated through partnership and country characteristics. I assume that household income for example can only mediate the effects on opportunity costs for women in countries, where a broad childcare system is offered or paid private childcare arrangements are common. By using data from the Generations- and Gender Survey, differences between the two countries concerning household income and mothers’ educational level can be found. Income seems to be more important in Hungary, where full-time day-care is often available. In Germany, education is more important than income. It can be assumed that higher educated German women, who already decided to have a child despite their high opportunity costs are more family oriented. All in all, a rather different picture for fertility intentions can be found, where none of the three levels should be neglected.