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Time for children and career in Germany - Time constraints, childcare and career paths

Sutter, Katharina Maria

Section B focuses on the intra-household allocation of time among couples. Using the German Socio-Economic Panel, this section investigates how the time allocation changes if one of the partners is forced out of market work by an involuntary lay-off. The results give some indication as to whether couples allocate their time due to time constraints or due to individual preferences. A difference-in-differences approach as well as panel methods are applied to identify the effects of negative employment shocks on childcare and housework of both partners. The results indicate that there is only a moderate reaction with respect to domestic work, namely childcare and housework. This evidence suggests that preferences determine the division of home-related work within families and that the intra-household time allocation is relatively rigid in the short term. In section C, I analyze whether there is a penalty for birth-related leaves of absence in terms of a loss in occupational prestige upon return to the labor market. I use the SIOPS information of the German Socio-Economic Panel (GSOEP) to investigate this for the case of Germany. Since the SIOPS information is only observed for those who are working, a two-step model according to Heckman (1979) is used to correct for this selection. In addition, a strategy suggested by Wooldridge (1995) is used to account for the panel structure of the GSOEP. The descriptive analysis offers a preliminary indication that occupational mobility is higher for mothers as compared to childless women, and that it is higher if the career interruption is long. This is true for upward as well as for downward mobility. The results reveal a prestige penalty for very long career interruptions. Section D analyzes the relationship between the use of informal childcare arrangements and the employment of mothers. The aim is to investigate whether the presence of this kind of childcare arrangements facilitates maternal labor market involvement. To analyze this question, the survey years 1999 through 2012 of the German Socio-Economic Panel (GSOEP) are used. The presence of informal childcare arrangements is most likely not exogenous to employment status. To take this into account, an instrumental variable approach is applied. The instrument for informal childcare is the information about whether the grandmother is still alive. Using two-stage least squares estimation, the findings reveal that women who receive the support through informal childcare are more likely to participate in the labor market. Since working hours are only observed for those who are participating in the work force, I apply a selection correction to analyze the employment hours. Informal childcare arrangements also have a positive impact on the working hours, even though the magnitude is small.


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Sutter, Katharina Maria: Time for children and career in Germany - Time constraints, childcare and career paths. 2015.


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