Volume 37 - Article 19 | Pages 599–634

Childbearing patterns among immigrant women and their daughters in Spain: Over-adaptation or structural constraints

By Amparo González-Ferrer, Teresa Castro-Martín, Elisabeth Kraus, Tatiana Eremenko

Print this page  Facebook  Twitter

 

 
Date received:06 Mar 2016
Date published:01 Sep 2017
Word count:5552
Keywords:descendants of immigrants, fertility, immigrants, natives, Spain
DOI:10.4054/DemRes.2017.37.19
 

Abstract

Background: Spain, a country with one of the lowest fertility levels in the world, has recently received intense immigration flows that may contribute to fertility recovery.

Objective: The objective of this study is to examine whether the childbearing behaviour of immigrant women and their descendants shows a pattern of convergence with that of Spanish women born in or after 1950.

Methods: After merging data from the Fertility and Values Survey (2006) and the National Immigrants Survey (2007), we analyse the transition to first, second, and third birth using event history models, to identify variations in timing and incidence of birth transitions between native Spanish women and immigrant groups.

Results: Previous literature has found that migration disrupts immigrants’ fertility only temporarily; however, in the case of Spain, most migrant women who moved before starting family formation do not seem to fully compensate for migration-related disruption of fertility at a later stage. Our findings challenge the widespread belief that immigrants’ childbearing alone will allow Spain to leave behind the current lowest-low and latest-late fertility scenario.

Contribution: This article analyzes for the first time the fertility of different immigrant generations in Spain compared to native women, applying event history techniques. Our findings challenge conventional wisdom that immigration will improve very low fertility levels in Spain.

Author's Affiliation

Amparo González-Ferrer - Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas (CISC), Spain [Email]
Teresa Castro-Martín - Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas (CISC), Spain [Email]
Elisabeth Kraus - Universitat Pompeu Fabra, Spain [Email]
Tatiana Eremenko - Institut National d'Études Démographiques (INED), France [Email]

Other articles by the same author/authors in Demographic Research

» Co-ethnic marriage versus intermarriage among immigrants and their descendants: A comparison across seven European countries using event-history analysis
Volume 39 - Article 17

» Mixed marriages between immigrants and natives in Spain: The gendered effect of marriage market constraints
Volume 39 - Article 1

» Change and continuity in the fertility of unpartnered women in Latin America, 1980–2010
Volume 38 - Article 51

» Social policies, separation, and second birth spacing in Western Europe
Volume 37 - Article 37

» What drives Senegalese migration to Europe? The role of economic restructuring, labor demand, and the multiplier effect of networks
Volume 35 - Article 13

» Partnership formation and dissolution among immigrants in the Spanish context
Volume 35 - Article 1

» The contributions of childbearing within marriage and within consensual union to fertility in Latin America, 1980-2010
Volume 34 - Article 29

» The reproductive context of cohabitation in comparative perspective: Contraceptive use in the United States, Spain, and France
Volume 32 - Article 5

» Sampling international migrants with origin-based snowballing method: New evidence on biases and limitations
Volume 25 - Article 3

» Single motherhood and low birthweight in Spain: Narrowing social inequalities in health?
Volume 22 - Article 27

» Is Latin America starting to retreat from early and universal childbearing?
Volume 20 - Article 9

» Women’s changing socioeconomic position and union formation in Spain and Portugal
Volume 19 - Article 41

» Not truly partnerless: Non-residential partnerships and retreat from marriage in Spain
Volume 18 - Article 16

Most recent similar articles in Demographic Research

» Mixed marriages between immigrants and natives in Spain: The gendered effect of marriage market constraints
Volume 39 - Article 1    | Keywords: immigrants, natives, Spain

» Partnership formation and dissolution among immigrants in the Spanish context
Volume 35 - Article 1    | Keywords: descendants of immigrants, immigrants, Spain

» First and second births among immigrants and their descendants in Switzerland
Volume 38 - Article 11    | Keywords: fertility, immigrants

» Depressed fertility among descendants of immigrants in Sweden
Volume 36 - Article 39    | Keywords: descendants of immigrants, fertility

» Why does fertility remain high among certain UK-born ethnic minority women?
Volume 35 - Article 49    | Keywords: fertility, immigrants