FAMSIZEMATTERs is an ERC Consolidator Grant project, led by Christiaan Monden. In this project, we bring together questions about family size and social inequalities. Sociologists have long studied how social inequalities are produced and reproduced, and have emphasized the role of families in these processes. Average family size and the distribution of number of children per women have changed substantally since the the middle of the previous century. However, most sociological studies on the reproduction of social inequalities focus on the association between a child’s life chances and his/her family of origin without taking into account these changes in family size. Demographers, on the other hand, have studied changes in fertility but usually not taken the next step to the possible consequences for social inequalities. FAMSIZEMATTERS studies a series of questions that bring these two issues together. We connect one of the central problems of social sciences – inequality – with one of the most significant population changes in recent history: the decline in fertility. Through this lens, we re-examine various mechanisms that (re)produce inequalities across time and across societies, and we generate new questions. We focus on the role the family plays in the reproduction of social inequalities in many areas of life, such differences in wealth and education, health, mortality and well-being.
FAMSIZEMATTERS has received funding from the European Research Council (ERC) under the European Union's Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 681546.