Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development
Paula Fomby | University of Michigan | Population Studies Center
Marcy Carlson | University of Wisconsin–Madison | Department of Sociology
Narayan Sastry | University of Michigan | Population Studies Center
Robert F. Schoeni | University of Michigan | Population Studies Center
During the last 40 years, family organization in the US has become increasingly complex, yielding an intricate and evolving network of biologically- and socially-based family relationships that transcend household boundaries. This project uses data from the Panel Study of Income Dynamics and its supplements to connect children to mothers’ and fathers’ union and childbearing trajectories even where children have little or no contact with nonresident parents. This design allows us to: 1) provide new descriptive estimates of family relationships and resources that span households;, 2) assess the factors that play into resource allocation in complex families; and 3) connect time-varying measures of resource allocation in complex families to the transition to adulthood net of a rich set of background information and controls. Our analytic models improve estimates of how the unfolding and dynamic relationship between family complexity and family economic resources during childhood impacts children’s transition to adulthood by reducing bias in estimators through adjustments for time-dependent confounding between family complexity and family economic resources.