Nicoletta Balbo

About Nicoletta Balbo

Nicoletta Balbo is a post-doctoral researcher at the Dondena Centre for Research on Social Dynamics and Public Policy/ Bocconi University in Milan, Italy. Nicoletta's research interests are in the field of family sociology and social demography, with a focus on fertility dynamics, social networks, subjective well-being and adolescent health.

Does Fertility Behavior Spread Among Friends?

In the past few years there has been a growing recognition of the effect of peers on an individual’s behaviour. Recent sociological literature has shown, for instance, that friends influence each other in areas such as smoking, drinking, and how much we exercise. In our recently published paper, we examine the influence of friends on an individual’s decision to have a child. So far, research on fertility behavior has largely neglected the fact that people are embedded in social networks, thereby failing to acknowledge that couples do not make fertility choices in a vacuum.

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