Fertility Decisions in Transition: Highly-Educated Young Adult’s Views on Fertility Three Decades Apart in Spain

Xiana Bueno-García, Harvard University

Spain has had low fertility levels for almost thirty years now. Qualitative interviews with highly-educated young adults from two studies in 1985 and 2012 provide a unique opportunity to explore their fertility intentions across two generations almost thirty years apart. Both studies share an uncertain economic context characterized by high unemployment. Economic insecurity, therefore, stands out as a stagnant factor behind fertility intentions of both generations coupled with the lack of support for work-life balance. Interviewees' reasoning also suggests that besides the advancements in gender equity the transition of gender-role norms towards greater egalitarianism remain unfinished. However, results indicate that changing age and family norms underline the differences between the fertility decision-making of respondents from the 1980s and 2010s setting aside the Second Demographic Transition. This study contributes to the debate on the central role of gender equity at the individual and the institutional level.

Presented in Poster Session 1