OECD Social, Employment and Migration Working Papers

1815-199X (online)
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This series is designed to make available to a wider readership selected labour market, social policy and migration studies prepared for use within the OECD. Authorship is usually collective, but principal writers are named. The papers are generally available only in their original language - English or French - with a summary in the other.

Child Well-Being and Sole-Parent Family Structure in the OECD

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Simon Chapple1
Author Affiliations
  • 1: OECD, France

23 Mar 2009
Bibliographic information

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This paper addresses the causal impact of being raised in a sole-parent family on child well-being across the OECD. The question is answered by a cross-OECD meta-analysis and a literature review. There are widely varying rates of sole parenthood across the OECD. Rates of sole parenthood have generally been rising in the past few decades. Inevitably, countries with higher rates of sole parenthood are more concerned about the potential well-being effects on children. The reasons for sole parenthood include never having partnered, having separated and divorced, and being widowed. The composition of sole parents by these reasons varies widely across OECD countries. Views on the desirability of two-parent families for raising children are also divergent across the OECD.
JEL Classification:
  • J12: Labor and Demographic Economics / Demographic Economics / Marriage ; Marital Dissolution ; Family Structure ; Domestic Abuse
  • J13: Labor and Demographic Economics / Demographic Economics / Fertility ; Family Planning ; Child Care ; Children ; Youth
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