Italian Parents: Implications of Childbearing for the Family Role-Set and Vice Versa

Letizia Mencarini, University of Florence
Maria Letizia Tanturri, University of Florence

In Italy the endurance of the traditional role-set within couples has resulted in an extreme "dual-burden" for working women and, as recently suggested, this can be a factor in explaining lowest-low fertility. Through quantitative and qualitative data on Italian (working and urban) parents, we analyse the family role-set before and after children and verify the hypothesis that low gender equity can lower the rates of having one more child. Results confirm that not much change has taken place in housework and childcare gender sharing; implications of a birth are still negative in term of gender equality; fatherhood increases time devoted to work, motherhood time spent on childcare or housekeeping. A progressive adaptation towards gender equity is only evident among a small proportion of dual-earning couples, where childbearing implies a more similar "revolution" of fathers' and mothers' time and activities, influencing positively the probability to have another child.

  See paper

Presented in Session 154: Gender and Fertility Decision-Making