Open Access Journal

ISSN: 2183-2803

Article | Open Access

Growing Childlessness and One‐Child Families in Slovakia in the Shadow of Fragile Pronatalism

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Abstract:  The model of very low childlessness and the low prevalence of one‐child families was once important for Slovak society. The collapse of the Communist regime, however, led to many changes in reproductive behaviour. This article aims to analyse the development of cohort childlessness and the prevalence of one‐child families in Slovakia. Possible scenarios of childlessness and one‐child families are presented. The article tries to place the obtained results within a broader framework of social and gender inequalities, existing barriers to parenthood, and family policy settings in Slovakia. The results confirm that the onset of the postponement process, combined with limited recuperation, especially of second and further children among women born since the second half of the 1960s, has brought a quite substantial increase in the proportion of childless and “one‐child” women. The persistence of some social and gender differences and obstacles in reconciling work and family, which has only recently seen a response from family policy in Slovakia, was confirmed; however, the impact of these new tools on reproduction appears to be obscure.

Keywords:  barriers to parenthood; childlessness; fragile pronatalism; gender inequalities; one‐child families; Slovakia; social inequalities


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© Branislav Šprocha. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 license (, which permits any use, distribution, and reproduction of the work without further permission provided the original author(s) and source are credited.