Immigrant Parents' Preferences for Children's Sex: A Register-Based Study of Fertility Behavior in Ten National-Origin Groups

20 Pages Posted: 15 Mar 2014

See all articles by Mats Lillehagen

Mats Lillehagen

University Of Oslo

Torkild Lyngstad

Department of Sociology and Human Geography; Statistics Norway - Research Department

Date Written: March 13, 2014

Abstract

Parental sex preferences for children have been documented in many native populations, but much less evidence is available on immigrants’ preferences for the sex of their children. Using high quality longitudinal register data from Norway, a country with a recent immigration history, we estimate hazard regression models of third birth rates by the sex composition of previous children born. Results show that there is an overall preference for at least one child of each sex also among immigrants, and that certain regions have strong preferences for boys. Sensitivity tests indicate that the age at arrival does not affect the conclusions. In sum, the findings support theories emphasizing cultural persistence, rather than theories of rapid integration and adaption of immigrants.

Keywords: immigrants, fertility, parental sex preferences, children, family composition, register data, Norway

JEL Classification: J13, J15

Suggested Citation

Lillehagen, Mats and Lyngstad, Torkild, Immigrant Parents' Preferences for Children's Sex: A Register-Based Study of Fertility Behavior in Ten National-Origin Groups (March 13, 2014). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2408391 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2408391

Mats Lillehagen (Contact Author)

University Of Oslo ( email )

PO Box 6706 St Olavs plass
Oslo, N-0317
Norway

Torkild Lyngstad

Department of Sociology and Human Geography ( email )

Moltke Moesvei 31
Oslo, 0851
Norway

HOME PAGE: http://folk.uio.no/torkildl

Statistics Norway - Research Department ( email )

Kongens Gt. 6
PO Box 8131 Dep
N-0033 Oslo
Norway

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