Long-Term Consequences of Adolescent Fertility in Colombia

Piedad Urdinola, Universidad Nacional de Columbia, Bogota
Carlos Ospino, Foundation for the Development of the Caribbean (FUNDESARROLLO)

Although Colombia’s overall fertility has steadily decreased since 1960, an increase in adolescent fertility has occurred since 1986. However, little research has been devoted to its long-term consequences or their children’s health outcomes. This document will measure such effects, by using three DHS in Colombia (1990, 1995 and 2000) to construct a pseudo-panel. After controlling for socioeconomic pre-existent characteristics, our preliminary results show little or no effect on educational outcomes. However, there are surprising effects on the marriage market and on their children’s survival. In Colombia, over 50% couples live in cohabitation, yet adolescent mothers almost never marry, while women who postpone motherhood tend to. Moreover, adolescent mothers from richer households have higher probabilities of remaining single than their counterparts. Finally, children born to adolescent women have higher probabilities of death, even if they are born after the mother has passed her adolescence, which contradicts findings on developed countries.

  See paper

Presented in Poster Session 6