Neighbourhoods and Workplaces: Do They Affect the Fertility of Immigrants and Their Descendants?

Allan Puur, Tallinn University
Leen Rahnu , University of Tallinn
Tiit Tammaru, University of Tartu

Changes in the childbearing patterns of migrants are seen as an important aspect of their integration into the host society. Previous research indicates that migrant fertility levels tend to converge with those of the host population. Despite a large body of literature on this topic, there is a lack of research into the deeper mechanisms that may underlie the observed shifts. In this study, we expand the previous research on migrant fertility by considering the ethnic contexts in two major domains of daily life – residential neighbourhoods and workplaces – as potential determinants of childbearing behaviour. The study relies on data from Finnish administrative registers. We estimated discrete time proportional hazards models separately for first, second and third births, during the period 1999–2014. In order to measure exposure to the immigrant population, we opted to use the time-varying proportion of immigrants in the neighbourhood and workplace. The results indicate that in Finland the most distinct ancestral group with regard to fertility levels is comprised of immigrants from Africa and the Middle East, who have considerably higher first-, second- and third-birth risks than the native population. However, among these immigrants and their descendants originating from high-fertility settings, reduced exposure to immigrants in residential neighbourhoods and workplaces is found to be associated with lower risks of first, second and third births. In addition, the effects associated with residential neighbourhoods and workplaces are found to operate to a large extent independently of each other.

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 Presented in Session 118. Fertility of Migrants