Maternal Employment and Childhood Obesity: A European Perspective

39 Pages Posted: 11 May 2013

See all articles by Wencke Gwozdz

Wencke Gwozdz

Copenhagen Business School; University of Hohenheim

Alfonso Sousa-Poza

University of Hohenheim - Institute of Household and Consumer Economics; IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Lucia A. Reisch

Copenhagen Business School - Department of Management, Society and Communication; Zeppelin University CCMP - Center for Consumer Markets Politics

Wolfgang Ahrens

University of Bremen

Stefaan De Henauw

Ghent University

Gabriele Eiben

University of Gothenburg

Juan Fernández-Alvira

University of Zaragoza

Charalampos Hadjigeorgiou

Research and Education Institute of Child Health (Strovolos)

Eva Kovács

University of Pécs

Fabio Lauria

Italian National Research Council (CNR)

Toomas Veidebaum

National Institute for Health Development (Tallinn)

Garrath Williams

Lancaster University

Karin Bammann

University of Bremen

Abstract

The substantial increase in female employment rates in Europe over the past two decades has often been linked in political and public rhetoric to negative effects on child development, including obesity. We analyse this association between maternal employment and childhood obesity using rich objective reports of various anthropometric and other measures of fatness from the IDEFICS study of children aged 2-9 in 16 regions of eight European countries. Based on such data as accelerometer measures and information from nutritional diaries, we also investigate the effects of maternal employment on obesity's main drivers: calorie intake and physical activity. Our analysis provides little evidence for any association between maternal employment and childhood obesity, diet or physical activity.

Keywords: maternal employment, children, obesity, Europe

JEL Classification: I12, J13, J22

Suggested Citation

Gwozdz, Wencke and Sousa-Poza, Alfonso and Reisch, Lucia A. and Ahrens, Wolfgang and De Henauw, Stefaan and Eiben, Gabriele and Fernández-Alvira, Juan and Hadjigeorgiou, Charalampos and Kovacs, Eva and Lauria, Fabio and Veidebaum, Toomas and Williams, Garrath and Bammann, Karin, Maternal Employment and Childhood Obesity: A European Perspective. IZA Discussion Paper No. 7371, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2263647

Wencke Gwozdz (Contact Author)

Copenhagen Business School ( email )

Solbjerg Plads 3
Frederiksberg C, DK - 2000
Denmark
+4538153391 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://www.cbs.dk/staff/wg

University of Hohenheim ( email )

Germany

Alfonso Sousa-Poza

University of Hohenheim - Institute of Household and Consumer Economics ( email )

Fruwirthstrasse 48
Kavaliershaus 4 116
70599 Stuttgart
Germany
++49 (0)711/459-22863 (Phone)
++49 (0)711/459-23953 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.uni-hohenheim.de/hhoek/englisch/people/alfonsosousapoza/index.html

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

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

Lucia A. Reisch

Copenhagen Business School - Department of Management, Society and Communication ( email )

Solbjerg Plads 3
Frederiksberg C, DK - 2000
Denmark

Zeppelin University CCMP - Center for Consumer Markets Politics ( email )

Am Seemooser Horn 20
Friedrichshafen, Lake Constance 88045
Germany

Wolfgang Ahrens

University of Bremen ( email )

Universitaetsallee GW I
No Address Available

Stefaan De Henauw

Ghent University ( email )

Coupure Links 653
Gent, 9000
Belgium

Gabriele Eiben

University of Gothenburg

Viktoriagatan 30
Göteborg, 405 30
Sweden

Juan Fernández-Alvira

University of Zaragoza

Gran Via 2
Zaragoza, 50005
Spain

Charalampos Hadjigeorgiou

Research and Education Institute of Child Health (Strovolos)

Strovolos
Cyprus

Eva Kovacs

University of Pécs

Rakoczi 80
Pecs, 7622
Hungary

Fabio Lauria

Italian National Research Council (CNR)

Via San Martino della battaglia, 44
Roma, 00185
Italy

Toomas Veidebaum

National Institute for Health Development (Tallinn)

Hiiu 42
Tallinn, EE-11619
Estonia

Garrath Williams

Lancaster University ( email )

Lancaster LA1 4YX
United Kingdom

HOME PAGE: http://www.lancs.ac.uk/fass/ppr/profiles/garrath-williams

Karin Bammann

University of Bremen

Universitaetsallee GW I
Bremen, 28365
Germany

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