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PARENTAL TIME INVESTMENTS AND INTERGENERATIONAL TRANSMISSION OF INEQUALITY

Periodic Reporting for period 3 - PARENTIME (PARENTAL TIME INVESTMENTS AND INTERGENERATIONAL TRANSMISSION OF INEQUALITY)

Reporting period: 2021-09-01 to 2022-06-30

High socio-economic status parents consistently produce high socio-economic status children. The question is how. The objective of PARENTIME is to develop new socio-economic theories that unpack the detailed mechanisms driving the inter-generational transmission of inequality. Because of data limitations and theoretical traditions, the literature has focused on a narrow conceptualization of parental time (limited to the quantity of time spent with children in different kinds of activities), and a narrow set of child outcomes (limited to educational outcomes and socio-behavioral outcomes during the early years). Thus, while the results from this literature are informative at documenting the phenomenon of inter-generational transmission of human capital, they remain silent about the mechanisms underlying the process. PARENTIME aims to close this gap.
The programme of work for the PARENTIME project specified 3 interconnected projects of work linked to three clearly identified objectives.

Project 1: A family-centered approach to parental time investments, had the main objective of moving beyond the quantity of parental time to understand parental time investments. The PI's expertise in the area of time-use research has led to fruitful collaborations on this area, leading to several published papers and policy reports in relation to the COVID-19 crisis that met the objectives set in Project 1. A multidimensional model of parental time investments. "Baby steps: The gender Division of Childcare during the COVID-19 pandemic", and "Family time use and home learning during the COVID-19 lockdown", use diary methods to understand not only the total time parents spend with their children in learning activities, but also instantaneous contextual information (such as real time enjoyment measures) as well as detailed simultaneous activity information for all household members (parents and children). The main findings from this line of research has been that mothers have taken on most of the bulk of additional childcare and housework as a result from school closures in terms of longer hours devoted to childcare, and also more interruptions due to the additional time spent in these activities. "COVID-19 School Closures and Parental Labor Supply in the United States" uses a quasi-experimental approach to estimate implications for parental labor market hours from school closures because of COVID-19 in the US. We find that parental labour hours go down by 10% more for states where schools closed (for mothers and fathers). This finding is net of other non-pharmaceutical interventions (such as closure of essential businesses) and suggests that additional time investments on children's schooling while on-line learning was the cause. Family activity sequencing was another strand of Project 1, and had as an objective to theoretically develop and empirically test timing-sensitive models that account not just for the amount of time, but also for the timing and sequence of activities of parents and children. "Marriage and Housework" is an example of how to use diary data to look at both parents, and see how the division of housework and childcare is affected upon forming a household. "Family time use and home learning during the COVID-19 lockdown" and "Inequalities in Children's Experiences of Home Learning during the COVID-19 Lockdown in England" further looks into the 24-h diary data to understand how the shift to on-line learning has affected the amount and sequencing of time children spend in learning activities at home, and how it depends by parental time investments. Inequalities in learning have increased during the pandemic, as children from more disadvantaged households spend less time learning and that time is more interrupted.

Project 2, "Understanding the long run effects of parental time investments" had as a main objective to uncover, for the first time, how parents can influence their children’s socio-economic and demographic outcomes all the way through adulthood. Key to project 2 was the great variety of child outcomes later on in life together with household diary surveys from linked Danish Data. In "Parental Time Investments and the Adult Outcomes of Children", Sarah Sander (PARENTIME post doctoral researcher), Mette Gortz (PARENTIME collaborator) and Almudena Sevilla (PI) use child specific time investments from the Danish Time Use Survey linked to register data to empirically estimate associations of parental time investments on children outcomes beyond the childhood and adolescent years. We find that mothers’ time in basic care activities is positively related to educational achievement, while fathers’ time in structured activities is positively related to earnings. This paper has been presented in several international conferences and is now in the process of being submitted as a working paper for publication thereafter and meets the objectives of Project 2.2. by investigating the long-lasting effects from parental time. "Adolescence Development and the Math Gender Gap" explores the impact of puberty on longer run academic outcomes, and the mediating roles of parental time investments. "Does the child penalty strike twice" explores the long run effect on adult labour supply from becoming grandparents, and the relationship with grandparental time investments in their grandchildren.

The objective of Project 3 "A Macro-level approach to parental time investments" was to use of micro-sequential information from the temporal and geographical variation in time use. To that end we use an under-utilized harmonized collection of event-sequence data for more than a dozen countries since the 60s from the Multinational Time Use Study (MTUS) as well as other diaries. Diaries do not contain information on children outcomes, so we link the diaries to a specially developed national-level database on institutional contexts and social norms and its implications for child development and the (re)production of socio-economic inequality. In "Gender Stereotyping in Sports", by Miriam Marcen (PARENTIME external collaboration), Marina Morales (PARENTIME academic visitor), and Almudena Sevilla (PARENTIME PI) we contributes to the literature of gender differences in academic attainment by putting together several sources of data going back several decades to investigate how gender stereotypes and parental time investments shape sport choices of boys and girls during high school. We document that states with more gender-equal norms are also states where boys and girls tend to break stereotypes when making sport choices in high school. We also identify parental time investments from Time Diary Data as being an important cultural-transmission mechanism.
The most significant achievements are:
1- Significant publications in top-ranked scientific journals
2- Significant academic impact, leading to the visibility of PARENTIME's research and the recognition among the academic community (for example, PARENTIME will be hosting the 2022 Society of Household Economics Conference, with more than 200 delegates. Similarly, and PARENTIME team members have lead special sessions at the 2021 Royal Economic Society conference, which hosts more than 500 delegates) (see project achievements and dissemination and autputs).
3- Significant influence on policy (for example, by contributing to the UK Parliament's consultations)
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