Volume 10 - Article 10 | Pages 265–286

Fertility and family policy in Norway - A reflection on trends and possible connections

By Marit Rønsen

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Date received:18 Feb 2004
Date published:08 Jun 2004
Word count:5245
Keywords:family policy, female education, fertility, Norway
Weblink:Please also see publication 10-6 by the same author.


Below replacement fertility in many countries has lead to a renewed public interest in policies that may encourage young people to have more children. The Nordic countries are sometimes in focus in this respect, as their fertility rates remain relatively high in spite of very high female labour force participation. The key question is therefore whether there is a connection between generous public policies that facilitate childbearing and employment, and fertility.
Using Norway as example and reviewing existing research evidence I conclude that generous family policies may be necessary, but not sufficient, to sustain fertility at a reasonable level. In particular, adverse macroeconomic conditions and rising unemployment have counteracting effects, as demonstrated by falling fertility rates in Sweden in the mid-1990s.

Author's Affiliation

Marit Rønsen - Statistisk sentralbyrå (Statistics Norway), Norway [Email]

Other articles by the same author/authors in Demographic Research

» Can public policies sustain fertility in the Nordic countries?: Lessons from the past and questions for the future
Volume 22 - Article 13

» Cohort fertility patterns in the Nordic countries
Volume 20 - Article 14

» Fertility and Public Policies - Evidence from Norway and Finland
Volume 10 - Article 6

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