Volume 21 - Article 3 | Pages 65–74

Relationships between men´s gender attitudes and fertility: Response to Puur et al.'s "Men’s childbearing desires and views of the male role in Europe at the dawn of the 21st century"

By Charles F. Westoff, Jenny Higgins

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Date received:
Date published:10 Jul 2009
Word count:1967
Keywords:European fertility, European Values Study, fertility, gender egalitarian attitudes, gender roles, men, World Values Survey


An analysis published in a recent edition of this journal (Puur, Olah, Tazi-Preve, and Dorbritz 2008) reported that, in eight European countries, men with egalitarian gender attitudes both desired and had more children than men with more traditional gender attitudes. These unexpected findings led us to explore a similar research question with an alternate dataset--the European/World Value Surveys. But we found--without exception--a negative association between men’s egalitarian attitudes and fertility, not only in the selected eight European countries but also in a considerable number of other developed countries. We explore possible reasons for and implications of these divergent findings.

Author's Affiliation

Charles F. Westoff - Princeton University, United States of America [Email]
Jenny Higgins - Princeton University, United States of America [Email]

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