This paper examines the effect of differences in ability on the timing and number of children. Higher skilled women have less disutility of labor and have relatively less utility of raising children. Motherhood has a negative effect on the accumulation of human capital by learning-by-doing and thereby on career perspectives. A decline in fertility is explained without a quantity-quality shift.

heterogeneity in skill level, number of children, timing childbearing
Fertility; Family Planning; Child Care; Children; Youth (jel J13), Time Allocation and Labor Supply (jel J22), Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity (jel J24)
Tinbergen Institute Discussion Paper Series
Tinbergen Institute

Alders, P.G.W. (1998). The Effect of Skill Level on the Timing of Childbearing and Number of Children (No. TI 98-127/3). Tinbergen Institute Discussion Paper Series. Retrieved from