Varieties of reproduction regimes: institutions, norms and social inequality
The research group funded through the DFG Emmy-Noether-Programme seeks to understand the interplay of policies regulating reproduction, inequalities and norms from a comparative perspective. Reproduction is understood as processes around intentionally and unintentionally having and not having children. The research will pay particular attention to the role of policies and regulations to a) shape patterns of reproduction in the life course differentially across social groups, and b) affect norms around reproduction and family. Three main questions will be addressed in comparative perspective:
What are typical patterns of how reproduction is regulated across high-income countries?
What patterns of stratified reproduction are associated with the institutional settings?
What are the associations between regulating reproduction and attitudes towards gender, sexuality and family in the population?
These questions will be addressed with theoretically informed comparative analyses, using a variety of methods and international data sources as well as a new database of reproduction policies, which will be built in the project. The project is unique in looking at institutional configurations of ‘classical’ instruments like abortion legislation, sex education and contraception policy alongside ‘new’ regulations like for assisted reproductive technologies. It is examined how institutional settings reduce stratified reproduction by providing policies that secure reproductive rights or how they cement existing inequalities based on sexuality, gender, class and ethnicity. The project takes a longitudinal perspective, allowing to study how inequalities unfold in reproduction regimes, where regulations lead to more tolerant attitudes and where they spawn a normative backlash.
Start date of the group is April 2022.