Education, values and union formation in Sweden
2007 (English)Report (Other academic)
Education provides opportunities for as well as barriers and alternatives to the formation of intimate unions. In this study, we consider the several mechanisms through which educational attainment may delay or speed up union formation. As do most other studies, we include both educational enrolment and attainment, the former viewed as a constraint on union formation, the latter facilitating the accumulation of resources that enable young couples to establish their own household. A third component is the inclusion of the attitudes and values that are hypothesized to arise from tertiary educational experiences and may mediate effects of education on union formation. We use data from the Swedish panel study “Family and Working Life in the 21st century”, selecting a sample of 658 single, childless adults age 22, 26, or 30 at the time of the first survey in 1999. The risk of union formation in the four years following the 1999 survey is estimated with Cox proportional hazard models. Neither educational attainment nor ongoing enrolment significantly influenced the risk of forming a new partnership between the surveys. With one exception, union formation was also unrelated to attitudes towards family and work. Contrary to predictions from a work-family conflict perspective, women who placed high value on demanding careers were more likely to enter coresidential unions than were other women. An analysis of selection into our analytic sample shows substantial educational differences. In the contemporary Swedish context, educational effects are found primarily in the very early years of adulthood and for the stronger life course commitments of marriage and parenthood.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: Sociologiska institutionen , 2007. , 23 p.
Stockholm Research Reports in Demography, ISSN 0281-8728
Sociology (excluding Social work, Social Psychology and Social Anthropology)
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-7295OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-7295DiVA: diva2:198004