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Open Access Publications from the University of California

The California Center for Population Research is a multidisciplinary Center for demographic research and graduate training. Founded in 1998, the Center is a cooperative venture of UCLA faculty from a variety of disciplines, including Economics, Geography, Medicine, Public Health, Public Policy, and Sociology. The Center receives financial support from the UCLA College of Letters and Sciences and from faculty research grants from the National Science Foundation and the National Institutes of Health.

Donald Treiman, Director
Lucy Shao, Assistant Director of Administration
UCLA
4284 Public Affairs Building
Mail Code: 148402
Box 951484
Los Angeles, CA 90095-1484

Cover page of Migration and Father Absence: Shifting Family Structure in Mexico

Migration and Father Absence: Shifting Family Structure in Mexico

(2013)

This study uses multistate life tables with data from the Mexican Family Life Survey to examine the contribution of migration to children’s time apart from their fathers. Other common sources of parental household absence, such as divorce, non-union fertility, and death are considered as well. Results suggest that more than a third of Mexican children experience some type of household disruption during childhood. As a population, Mexican children spend nearly equal amounts of time living with a single mother following a father’s migration as they do living with a single mother following union dissolution. Additionally, 7 percent of Mexican children in 2002 have migrating fathers, yet multistate estimates suggest that 17 percent of children born into two-parent homes are expected to experience a migrating father at least once during childhood. Other results highlight key differences in children’s experiences by urban status at birth and by the education level of their mothers.

Cover page of Women's and Men's Career Referents: How Gender Composition and Comparison Level Shape Career Expectations

Women's and Men's Career Referents: How Gender Composition and Comparison Level Shape Career Expectations

(2009)

This study examines how women’s and men’s career referents, the people they see as having similar careers, affect career expectations. We raise two questions. First, what is the relative effect of the gender composition and comparison level of career referents on such expectations? Second, what happens to career expectations when women and men identify career referents at the same comparison level? Current research suggests that women have lower career expectations than men because they compare themselves with women who hold lower-level positions than the career referents identified by men. Thus, if women and men identify with similar level career referents, their career expectations should be equal. However, this chain of reasoning has not been tested. Using data collected from a large organization, we identify both the specific individuals women and men perceive as having similar careers and these referents’ career levels, defined as their hierarchical level in the firm. The results show that the level of career referents is more important than their gender composition in explaining individuals’ career expectations. In contrast to extant explanations, the results show that even when women identify career referents at the same levels as men, they still exhibit significantly lower career expectations. Drawing on social comparison theory, we speculate this occurs because men’s expectations are bolstered by extreme upward comparisons, whereas women’s expectations are dampened, perhaps because they see high achieving others as representing a less probable goal.

Cover page of Marshallian Localization Economies: Where Do They Come From and To Whom Do They Flow?

Marshallian Localization Economies: Where Do They Come From and To Whom Do They Flow?

(2009)

Dense concentrations of economic activity are generally seen as giving rise to increasing returns that may be shared by business units that cluster in particular locations. What are the sources of these increasing returns and do they benefit all businesses or only some? Theories of the firm and strategic management argue that competitive advantage originates in the development and exploitation of firm-specific assets or capabilities that may be internal or external to the firm. The extent of firm heterogeneity suggests that businesses search for profit in many different ways. We might anticipate that older, larger, foreign-owned and multi-plant firms draw upon internal resources more readily than young, small, domestic, single-plant firms. Do the benefits of agglomeration vary among business establishments according to these characteristics? We examine this question using plant-level longitudinal micro-data from the Canadian manufacturing sector. We show that most manufacturing plants benefit from co-location, but that plants with different characteristics benefit in different ways.

Cover page of With (or Without) this Ring: Race, Ethnic, and Nativity Differences in the Demographic Significance of Cohabitation in Women’s Lives

With (or Without) this Ring: Race, Ethnic, and Nativity Differences in the Demographic Significance of Cohabitation in Women’s Lives

(2009)

Using pooled data from the 1995 and 2002 NSFGs, we compare the timing and type of first union, fertility behavior in cohabitation and marriage, and the duration and outcome of first cohabiting unions for White, Black, U.S.-born Mexican American, and foreign-born Mexican American women. We find that the most pronounced differences in cohabitation are between foreign-born Mexicans and women born in the United States. Although the behavior of most foreign-born Mexicans favors marriage over cohabitation, cohabitation may substitute for marriage for a small number of foreign-born Mexicans. Patterns of cohabitation among U.S.- born Mexican Americans are consistently between those of foreign-born Mexicans and U.S.- born Whites, suggesting that assimilation changes union behavior. For Whites, our results suggest that cohabitation is a stage in the courtship process leading to marriage; whereas for Blacks, cohabitation is a highly unstable union that appears to substitute for marriage. Much of the variation by race, ethnicity and nativity status is accounted for by group differences in socioeconomic characteristics. Remaining variation may be attributable to group differences in the value of marriage and the obligations of partners in consensual unions.

Cover page of Dynamic Estimation of the Incentive Schemes and Signalling Costs of Grade In°ation

Dynamic Estimation of the Incentive Schemes and Signalling Costs of Grade In°ation

(2009)

Higher education is a subject of continual interest. It is marked as an area to propel growth and equality, and public monies in the many billions of dollars are spent annually for its support. Over the past half century, there is evidence of grade in°ation within these universities and colleges. However, the potential and actual costs of this grade in°ation have been understudied, as well as the feedback e®ects of changes in the labor market. This paper ¯rst examines grading, enrollment, and quality trends in UCLA from 1980-2007. The data demonstrates that there is in°ation, even likely when controlling for improvement in student quality. The data also shows that there is a lot of movement in grading patterns over the period; some departments are choosing not to in°ate. I construct a stochastic dynamic model which demonstrates the tensions that encourages and discourages grade in°ation. It also shows that grade in°ation can cause higher variance in initial wages, which might induce some to pursue graduate degrees as an additional signal. The paper then provides suggestions of how it might be estimated with the proper data. Given that the UCLA data does not have all of the information necessary to estimate this model, the paper concludes by making suggestions for a model that can be constructed with the current data, with the intention of so doing.

Cover page of Take Me “Home”: Determinants of Return Migration Among Germany’s Elderly Immigrants

Take Me “Home”: Determinants of Return Migration Among Germany’s Elderly Immigrants

(2009)

This paper examines the determinants of return migration as foreign-born individuals approach old age in Germany. Return migration in later life engages a different set of conditions than return migration earlier on, including framing return as a possible retirement strategy. Using data from the German Socioeconomic Panel, results suggest that later-life emigrants are “negatively selected” on the basis of economic resources. However, family resources such as spousal characteristics and ties to kin in “home” and “host” countries also shape decisions to return. Results from this paper highlight the broader importance of framing return migration within the processes of international migration and immigrant incorporation.

Cover page of The Impact of College Education on Fertility: Evidence for Heterogeneous Effects

The Impact of College Education on Fertility: Evidence for Heterogeneous Effects

(2009)

Despite a substantial literature on the effects of education on women's fertility, little is known about possible variation in effects by selection into college. Women’s increasing educational attainment motivates further attention to the impact of education on fertility patterns, particularly among college‐educated women who have a low likelihood of attending and completing college. With data on U.S. women from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth 1979, we examine effects of timely college attendance and completion by propensity score strata using a hierarchical linear model and stratum‐specific discrete‐time event‐history models. We find evidence for significant, systematic variation in effects. The fertility‐decreasing college effect is concentrated among disadvantaged women with a low propensity for college attendance and completion, approaches zero as the propensity for college increases, and then reverses to a fertility‐increasing effect among the most advantaged women.

Cover page of I’d Like to Thank the Academy, Team Spillovers, and Network Centrality

I’d Like to Thank the Academy, Team Spillovers, and Network Centrality

(2009)

In this article we use Academy Award nominations for acting to explore how artistic achievement is situated within collaborative context. The context of individual effort is particularly important in film since quality is not transparent and the project-based nature of the field allows us to observe individuals in multiple contexts. Controlling for the actor’s personal history and basic traits of the film we explore two basic predictions. First, we find that status, as measured by asymmetric centrality in the network of screen credits, is an efficient measure of star power and mediates the relationship between experience and formal artistic consecration. Second, we find that actors are most likely to be consecrated when working with elite collaborators. We conclude by arguing that selection into privileged work teams is a locus of cumulative advantage.

Cover page of Show me the money! The geography of contributions to California's Proposition 8

Show me the money! The geography of contributions to California's Proposition 8

(2009)

This paper provides an overview of disclosure with regard to contributions in favor of and against California's Proposition 8 measure that banned same-sex marriage. Using publicly available data, out-of-state and in-state contributions are mapped, and the geography of California state politics and the consequences of disclosure are discussed.

Cover page of The Impact of Adequate Prenatal Care in a Developing Country: testing the WHO recommendations

The Impact of Adequate Prenatal Care in a Developing Country: testing the WHO recommendations

(2009)

Deficient birth outcomes entail greater mortality risks, and higher probabilities of poor future health. This study is the first statistical examination of the effect of the World Health Organization’s recommended number of prenatal care visits for developing countries on birth outcomes. This study accounts for the endogenous nature of prenatal care decisions by using an instrumental variables approach based on the accessibility of prenatal services. Using the CLHN Survey I construct a measure of prenatal care which involves both timing and intensity and that shows positive impacts for the combination of both. The results are highly robust to changes in measures of birth outcome but are only significant for urban areas. The lack of impact on rural areas could be due to the inferior quality of prenatal care services received there. This theory is corroborated when controlling directly for care quality.