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Title: Contextual and Policy Predictors of Early Fertility and Sex in the United States Immigrant Population
Resulting in 1 citation.
1. Deleone, Felicia Yang
Contextual and Policy Predictors of Early Fertility and Sex in the United States Immigrant Population
Ph.D. Dissertation, Cornell University, 2008
Cohort(s): NLSY79, NLSY97
Publisher: ProQuest Dissertations & Theses (PQDT)
Keyword(s): Adolescent Fertility; Age at First Birth; Census of Population; Education Indicators; Fertility; Financial Assistance; Immigrants; Natality Detail Files; Sexual Behavior; Welfare

Permission to reprint the abstract has not been received from the publisher.

The record volume of immigration to the United States in the past four decades coupled with dramatic changes in the characteristics of the foreign-born population have contributed to widespread interest in the social adjustment and economic consequences of the newest Americans. This dissertation addresses these issues by examining contextual and policy predictors of fertility and fertility-related behavior for U.S. immigrants using data from the 1979 and 1997 National Longitudinal Surveys of Youth, the 2000 Census Public Use Microdata Series, and the Vital Statistics Natality Detail Files. Immigrant fertility is an important topic of research because it serves both as an indicator of how well immigrants have assimilated to native norms along a fundamental dimension and as a barometer of growth in a distinct and increasingly salient U.S. population.

Chapter 1 looks at cohort and generation differences in levels and predictors of early fertility and sex among first, second, and third-plus generation young adults in the U.S. during the late 1970s and 1990s. The analyses seek to determine (1) how this behavior has changed by generation and arrival cohort and (2) what family and community factors predict these outcomes for immigrants. The study finds that first-generation immigrant youth exhibit the lowest levels of early fertility and sex, negatively assimilating by the third-plus generation. The findings suggest a positive association between arrival cohort early sex only. Further, the research fails to uncover significant predictors of these outcomes among first and second generation immigrants although the measures used have long been associated with them in the general population--suggesting that protective effects of generation reflect unmeasured cultural and social mechanisms.

Chapter 2 examines whether welfare policy changes occurring in the 1990s altered fertility outcomes for low-educated and unmarried foreign-born women. The study also looks at whether welfare reform had unintended consequences on immigrant women, like reducing prenatal care or decreasing the fertility of welfare-eligible or non-welfare dependent women through "chilling effects." The results show no consistent evidence that welfare policy changed fertility behavior among any immigrant group and raises doubt concerning the usefulness of targeting women's childbearing decisions with economic incentives.

Bibliography Citation
Deleone, Felicia Yang. Contextual and Policy Predictors of Early Fertility and Sex in the United States Immigrant Population. Ph.D. Dissertation, Cornell University, 2008.