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Working Papers, No. 2011-09, November 2011
Fertility Transitions Along the Extensive and Intensive Margins (REVISED June 2012)

By augmenting the standard quantity-quality model with an extensive margin, we generate sharp testable predictions of causes of fertility transitions. We test the model on two generations of Southern black women affected by a large-scale school construction program. Consistent with our model, women facing improved schooling opportunities for their children became more likely to have at least one child but chose to have smaller families overall. By contrast, women who themselves obtained more schooling due to the program delayed childbearing along both the extensive and intensive margins and entered higher quality occupations, consistent with education raising opportunity costs of child rearing.

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