The macrostructural context of the marriage market: longitudinal dynamics

The opportunities for getting acquainted with potential romantic partners that arise from their individual social environment ? the marriage market ? are subject of intensive cross-sectional studies. In contrast with that approach, this project will describe and analyze the longitudinal dynamics of the marriage market's macrostructural and demographical context that constrains the composition of the individual's social environment. It thus analyzes the opportunities that arise from societies social structure. The approach refers to a cross-sectional study that described the macrostructural conditions on the level of german counties with indicators that accounted for the central dimensions of the marriage market: age, education, and availability for romantic partnership or marriage. The project's central aims are (1) to calculate these indicators for all german counties in the years from 1985 until 2013. On this basis, the project shall (2) describe and compare the development of the marriage market's macrostructural context over the life course of diverse cohorts. (3) The project shall identify the sources of the macrostructural indicator's variation in time and space. (4) It will be analyzed how the macrostructural condidtions of the marriage market contribute to a variation of values and gender roles in time and space. Furthermore, (5) the indicators will be linked with the German socioeconomic panel (since 1984) and with the German Family Panel (pairfam) to analyze how marital choice and marital stability depend on the situation on the marriage market. Finally, (6) it is planned to establish a regular routinzed calculation of the macrostructural indicators and their linkage with individual data.

Duration: since 2012
Dr. Johannes Stauder
Dr. Jan Eckhard, Tom Kossow, Laura Unsöld

Methodology Report