Journal of Population Economics

, Volume 27, Issue 3, pp 739–765 | Cite as

Adieu Rabenmutter—culture, fertility, female labour supply, the gender wage gap and childcare

Original Paper


This paper studies the effect of cultural attitudes on childcare provision, fertility, female labour supply and the gender wage gap. Cross-country data show that fertility, female labour force participation and childcare provision are positively correlated with each other, while the gender wage gap seems to be negatively correlated with these variables. The paper presents a model with endogenous fertility, female labour supply and childcare choices driven by cultural attitudes which fits these facts. There may exist multiple equilibria: one with zero childcare provision, low fertility and female labour supply and high wage gap and one with high childcare provision, high fertility and female labour supply and low wage gap.


Cultural attitudes Fertility Female labour supply Wage gap Childcare 

JEL classifications

J13 J21 J16 



I would like to thank Alexander Bick as well as seminar participants at DIW Berlin, University of Dortmund, ifo Institute Munich, UC Irvine, University of Passau, the EALE Conference 2011 and the Verein f¨ur Socialpolitik Annual Conference 2011 for the comments. Thanks are also due to an anonymous referee and the editor Junsen Zhang for the helpful comments. Part of this paper was written during a research visit to UC Irvine. Special thanks to Jan Brueckner and the Economics Department for their hospitality.

Supplementary material

148_2013_499_MOESM1_ESM.pdf (928 kb)
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of EconomicsUniversity of PotsdamPotsdamGermany
  2. 2.CESifoMunichGermany
  3. 3.DIW BerlinBerlinGermany

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