The number of children raised by parents whose unions have dissolved is increasing with the recent demographic shifts, such as the increase in the rates of single motherhood and cohabitation. Quite a few previous studies report that these children are disadvantaged relative to children who live with continuously married parents. Why the well-being of the children of dissolved unions is compromised is not well known. The disadvantage has been partly attributed to the biological parents' poor socioeconomic circumstances. However, few studies have systematically investigated other potential contributors. Economic/evolutionary theories and a structural theory of the family suggest two additional, but contrasting, contributors. The economic/evolutionary theories suggest that the amount of resources transferred from a step-parent is smaller than the amount of transferred from a biological parent. They also suggest that resources from step-parents have relatively little beneficial impact on child well-being. A structural theory of the family implies that the type of parental union in which the children of dissolved unions are placed (e.g., a remarriage) diminishes the level, and the beneficial impact, of parental transfers on the well-being of children. An investigation of whether the amount and the impact of parental transfers differ by parent type or parental union type has major implications for theories of intergenerational transfers and the family, and for social policy. The goals of this project are to examine: a) whether there are differentials in the amount of money children receive from parents and the amount of time children spend with parents by parent composition/type or union type, controlling for the parents' and children's characteristics; and b) whether there are differentials in the beneficial impact of a dollar from parents, or a minute spent with a parent, on the cognitive/academic well-being of children by parent composition/type or union type. Children of divorce and children of non-marriage will be analyzed separately. The NLSY, 1997 cohort, 1997-2001, and the Child Development Supplement, 1997-2001, combined with the core data of the Panel Study of Income Dynamics, 1968-2001, will be analyzed to accomplish these goals.
|Ono, Hiromi (2011) Family Types, Direct Money Transfers from Parents, and School Enrollment among Youths. Marriage Fam Rev 47:45-72|
|Ono, Hiromi; Sanders, James (2010) Diverse Family Types and Out-Of-School Learning Time of Young School Age Children. Fam Relat 59:506-519|