Decline in Births Among Twentysomething Women, by Race

This week the Urban Institute tackles the fertility question:  Will the birth rate drop among young women since the 2007 recession be made up by births to those same women when they’re in their 30’s & 40’s?  (20-somethings now have the lowest birth rate of any previous generation, they note — which pairs up with the wider point they don’t make, that the overall US birthrate is at an all-time low.)

Or will the US birthrate fall, parallel to falls in Western Europe & in Japan? Will the economy suffer? Will immigration rise and make up the difference?  How will people (male & female) feel about life without kids longterm?  & What about Naomi?

They don’t ask my favorite questions:

Would affordable childcare and/or a full-time school option make a difference?

& How many and what jobs will the fast-changing future of work call for, and how will  our ideas of work alter to fill and support future people’s lives in a widely mechanized world?    What are we learning about What Women Want, in an environment where they actually have a choice?  How will a population plunge affect the old folks’  funding sources and caregiver pool?  What’s holding us back from doing the obvious and investing in the education of our youngest citizens and in the infrastructure that will allow our current workers to succeed?

 Follow up article from WashPo on the potential consequences of low birth rates, maybe good & maybe bad,  down the line.


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