Timing preferences for family formation among immigrant and majority groups in Europe

Jennifer A. Holland, Netherlands Interdisciplinary Demographic Institute (NIDI)
Helga A. G. de Valk, Netherlands Interdisciplinary Demographic Institute (NIDI) and Vrije Universiteit Brussel

Timing preferences for family life transitions are indicative of how individuals perceive the life course. They provide insight into differential values and ideals across groups and are an innovative measure of immigrant adaptation. We use data from the European Social Survey (Round 3, 2006) to assess timing preferences for marriage and having a first child, for men and women of immigrant and majority group origin in 25 European countries. We build individual-level models to explore how timing preferences vary by immigrant status and regions of residence and origin. We find that both regions of residence and origin shape preferences, although the pattern and strength of the association vary by among immigrants. Results suggest that cultural and sociopolitical contexts play a role in determining timing preferences for all members of a society, irrespective of origin.

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Presented in Session 17: Family formation among migrants