The Geography of Relationships in Sweden: Matri- and Patrilocal Bias in Childbearing Unions

Margarita Chudnovskaya, Stockholm University

This study examines geographical distance between childbearing couples and their older parents using Swedish administrative register data. We look at all unions who ave birth to a 1st child in 2007 (N=80 130) and measure the distance to the four grandparents of the newly born child. We study the relative geographical distance of the man’s and the woman’s parents finding that couples more often live closer to the man’s parents. Where the couple first met and joint decision making could both affect geographical proximity to their parents. Internal migration patterns or family based migration decisions are both plausible mechanisms. We also study the role of education, as it is an important factor influencing mobility for young people in Sweden, finding that the male advantage in geographical proximity to kin can be found regardless of any combination of educational level of the man and the woman.

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Presented in Poster Session 8