Divorced Fathers' Proximity and Children's Long Run Outcomes: Evidence from Norwegian Registry Data

43 Pages Posted: 1 Feb 2010

See all articles by Ariel Kalil

Ariel Kalil

University of Chicago - Harris School of Public Policy

Magne Mogstad

University of Chicago

Mari Rege

University of Stavanger

Mark Votruba

Case Western Reserve University - Weatherhead School of Management

Abstract

This study examines the link between divorced nonresident fathers' proximity and children's long-run outcomes using high-quality data from Norwegian population registers. We follow (from birth to young adulthood) 15,992 children born into married households in Norway in the years 1975-1979 whose parents divorce during his or her childhood. We observe the proximity of the child to his or her father in each year following the divorce and link proximity to children's educational and economic outcomes in young adulthood, controlling for a wide range of observable characteristics of the parents and the child. Our results show that closer proximity to the father following a divorce has, on average, a modest negative association with offspring's young-adult outcomes. The negative associations are stronger among children of highly-educated fathers. Complementary Norwegian survey data show that highly-educated fathers report more post-divorce conflict with their ex-wives as well as more contact with their children (measured in terms of the number of nights that the child spends at the fathers' house). Consequently, the father's relocation to a more distant location following the divorce may shelter the child from disruptions in the structure of the child's life as they split time between households and/or from post-divorce interparental conflict.

Keywords: fathers' proximity, divorce, child development, long-run outcomes, relocation

JEL Classification: J12, J13

Suggested Citation

Kalil, Ariel and Mogstad, Magne and Rege, Mari and Votruba, Mark, Divorced Fathers' Proximity and Children's Long Run Outcomes: Evidence from Norwegian Registry Data. IZA Discussion Paper No. 4715, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1545142

Ariel Kalil (Contact Author)

University of Chicago - Harris School of Public Policy ( email )

Magne Mogstad

University of Chicago ( email )

1101 East 58th Street
Chicago, IL 60637
United States

Mari Rege

University of Stavanger ( email )

PB 8002
Stavanger, 4036
Norway

Mark Votruba

Case Western Reserve University - Weatherhead School of Management ( email )

10900 Euclid Ave.
Cleveland, OH 44106-7235
United States

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