Family planning in the Netherlands: social networks and fertility


Deciding whether and when to have children are important decisions in the lives of people. In this talk, I focus on how these decisions may be influenced by others. Different mechanisms of influence are distinguished, including social learning, pressure, contagion, and support. I’ll discuss to what extent these mechanisms can explain why there is such a strong positive association between education and being childfree. Data come from the LISS-panel, a representative, longitudinal internet panel in the Netherlands. Large personal networks (of 25 alters) were collected for ~750 Duch women. I’ll also highlight a new survey-tool that allows for a efficient and ‘fun’ way of collecting personal network data, typically a burdensome task.

Sociology Colloquium
Utrecht, the Netherlands