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Workforce transitions following childbearing in Australia

Jennifer A. Baxter, Australian Institute of Family Studies

In Australia, women’s employment is often disrupted to some extent by childbearing, with women taking time out of the labour force to care for young children, and then often returning to work part-time to better manage the competing priorities of work and family. This paper explores the relationship between childbearing and employment by examining the workforce transitions after childbearing. The work history collected as part of the 1996-97 and 2000 waves of the Negotiating the Life Course Survey, along with the birth and relationship history and other key variables, makes it possible to construct a broad timeline of transitions back to work after childbearing, differentiating between transitions to full-time or part-time work. This report uses descriptive and multivariate methods to analyse the possible exit from work on commencement of childbearing, then the return to work after.

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Presented in Session 165: Labour market changes and their demographic correlates