Childcare, Eldercare, and Labor Force Participation of Married Women in Urban China: 1982-2000

46 Pages Posted: 14 Jun 2009

See all articles by Margaret Maurer-Fazio

Margaret Maurer-Fazio

Bates College - Department of Economics; IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Rachel Connelly

Bowdoin College - Department of Economics; IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Chen Lan Lan

Institute of Labor Studies, Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security, China

Lixin Tang

Bates College

Abstract

We employ data from the three most recent Chinese population censuses to consider married, urban women's labor force participation decisions in the context of their families and their residential locations. We are particularly interested in how the presence in the household of preschool and school-age children and/or the elderly and disabled affects women's likelihood of engaging in work outside the home. We find that the presence of older people in the household (any parent or parent-in-law and any person aged 75 or older) significantly increases prime-age urban women's likelihood of participating in market work and that presence of pre-school age children significantly decreases it. The negative effect on women's labor force participation of having young children in the household (compared to no children in the household) is substantially larger in magnitude for married, migrant women than for married, non-migrant urban residents. This appears to be explained, in part, by the practice of married, female migrants leaving their children in the care of relatives in rural areas in order to facilitate their employment.

Keywords: labor force participation, China, childcare, eldercare, migrants, population census, urban women

JEL Classification: J11, J12, J13, J16, J22, O15, P23, R23

Suggested Citation

Maurer-Fazio, Margaret and Connelly, Rachel and Lan, Chen Lan and Tang, Lixin, Childcare, Eldercare, and Labor Force Participation of Married Women in Urban China: 1982-2000. IZA Discussion Paper No. 4204. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1419347

Margaret Maurer-Fazio (Contact Author)

Bates College - Department of Economics ( email )

276 Pettengill Hall
4 Andrews Road
Lewiston, ME 04240
United States
207-786-6087 (Phone)
207-786-8338 (Fax)

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

Rachel Connelly

Bowdoin College - Department of Economics ( email )

Brunswick, ME 04011
United States
207-725-3790 (Phone)

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

Chen Lan Lan

Institute of Labor Studies, Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security, China ( email )

China

Lixin Tang

Bates College ( email )

204 Lane Hall
2 Andrews Road
Lewiston, ME 04240
United States

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