Study: How Your Hometown Affects Your Likelihood of Marriage

Does your hometown encourage or discourage marriage? New York Times.

How does your hometown measure up?  Screen grab via the New York Times.

Here’s an interesting study we came across today: According to data published by The New York Times, where you grow up plays a role in how likely you are to get married (by the age of 26, to be exact).

What it boils down to is political ideology, population size and how those two factors contribute to a whether a state/county/city encourages or discourages marriage. In general, they found that conservative and less densely populated places are more likely to encourage marriage while liberal areas and large cities tend to discourage it.

So how do we measure up? If you check out the interactive map here you’ll see that Southeastern Pennsylvania leans heavily towards the “less likely to get married” end of the spectrum, as does a majority of the Northeast. Specifically, children who grow up in Delaware and Philadelphia counties—instead of an “average place”—are seven and six percentage points less likely to be married by age 26, respectively. Children from Montgomery and Chester counties have a little better odds: They’re three and one percentage points less likely to be married by age 26, respectively.

Now, even though the stats here only look at a child’s odds of being married by age 26, the researchers have found similar patterns when they look at the data up to age 30 (the children in the study aren’t yet old enough for conclusions past age 30). They’re assuming, then, in the areas where children appear less likely to be married by 26, they’re also “less likely to be married by 30 and probably less likely to marry at any point.”

Want to know more? Take a look at the rest of the data here.

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