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Title: Contraception, Dating, and Marriage
Resulting in 1 citation.
1. Zuppann, Charles Andrew
Contraception, Dating, and Marriage
Ph.D. Dissertation, Department of Economics, University of Chicago, 2011
Cohort(s): NLSY97
Publisher: ProQuest Dissertations & Theses (PQDT)
Keyword(s): Contraception; Dating; Marriage; Sexual Activity; Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDs)

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

One of the biggest changes in marriage and dating over the past 100 years has been the rapid advancement in contraceptive technology. My work addresses the questions of how this drastic change in access has changed women's sexual and marital decision making. I develop a model where individuals date before marrying in order to learn about relationship quality. While dating, individuals face the risk of pregnancy or contracting a sexually-transmitted infection (STI). The model predicts that contraceptive improvements increase the number of sexual partners, increase sexual acts, increase STI rates, and, under certain conditions, delay marriages and lower single motherhood rates. I use changes in states' over-the-counter (OTC) sales policies for emergency contraception as a natural experiment in varying access to contraceptive technology. Using multiple sources of data on birth rates, STIs, marriages, and sexual activity, I confirm the predictions of the model and find that OTC policies have a significant impact on sexual behavior and relationships. Applying the lessons of that model to the introduction of the birth control pill in the 1960s and 1970s, I find that access to the pill decreased stability for preexisting marriages.
Bibliography Citation
Zuppann, Charles Andrew. Contraception, Dating, and Marriage. Ph.D. Dissertation, Department of Economics, University of Chicago, 2011.