Male fertility decision-making process and social network using retrospective data

Ladislav Rabusic, Masaryk University
Beatrice Chromková Manea, Masaryk University
Klára Capková, Masaryk University

This paper explores the importance of social network on male fertility. We investigate the decision-making process of having a first child by use of individual’s network of informal relationships. Philipov et al., 2006; Billari et al., 2009 draw upon the theory of planned behavior in relation to fertility intentions by emphasizing the role of social network. We extend the existing research on fertility intentions by providing an analysis based on retrospective data. Drawing from a new study on Czech men aged 40-55, we examine how pressure from social network influenced male fertility intentions to have a first child. Given the retrospective aspect of data, we do not use directly the intentions to have a first child. We constructed a variable that measures the time elapsed from the age at which men considered to have a first child until the age they really have a first child. We recoded time as follows: no plans – first child was born (almost) unplanned, standard term –2 to 4 years between considering to have a first child and the birth of the first child, and long term, 5 or more years between considering to have a first child and the birth of the first child. Socio-demographic, attitudes, ideational and perceived control factors are used as background determinants in our analysis. Results show that social network has a positive effect on having a child within the standard period of time (fulfilling the standard term). Regarding the perceived control variables, Income played no role in men’s decision to become a parent. High importance of having a job, being educated and importance of housing had all positive effects on fulfilling fertility intentions within the standard period of time, whereas the rise of importance of health for childbearing came along with higher chance to become a father unplanned.

  See extended abstract

Presented in Session 59: Social network and fertility

´