The Effects of Educational Reversals on First Births in Sub-Saharan Africa: A Dynamic Multilevel Perspective

Laurie DeRose, University of Maryland
Oystein Kravdal, University of Oslo

In many areas throughout sub-Saharan Africa, young adult cohorts are less educated than their predecessors because economic crisis brought on declines in school enrollments during the 1980s or 1990s. While low education would typically predict high fertility, a decline itself could theoretically have a counteracting effect if relative deprivation motivates lower fertility. We use Demographic and Health Survey data from 16 countries in sub-Saharan Africa in a multilevel fixed-effects model to assess the importance of educational reversals for first-birth timing. Our work indicates that a crisis that includes education decline is particularly unlikely to produce a delayed entry into parenthood.

  See paper

Presented in Session 54: Education and Fertility