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Stefanie Kley and Johannes Huinink (2006)

Leaving the Parental Home of Eastern and Western Germans after Reunification*

In: Zeitschrift für Bevölkerungswissenschaft, Vol. 31, 1/2006, p. 127-154, Wiesbaden: VS Verlag für Sozialwissenschaften, ISSN: 0340-2398

The formation of the first independent household of German men and women born in 1971 is investigated. Particular attention is paid to an analysis of the interrelation with other life events, namely starting post-secondary education, first entry into employment, and first union formation. In addition, we address the issue of enduring differences between Eastern and Western Germany. Previous research rarely examined the interrelation between markers of the transition to adulthood and the timing of household formation. The temporal relationship between these life events and household formation can be illustrated by applying methods of survival analysis. The results indicate that formation of the first independent household often accompanies the start of university and the first union formation. Entry into employment is followed by a medium-term acceleration of the process of first household formation. Considerable differences between Eastern and Western Germany can be found, even though differences between men and women are even greater.

* peer-reviewed article (original German title: Die Gründung des eigenen Haushalts bei Ost- und Westdeutschen nach der Wiedervereinigung)

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