The perspectives of family policy in Russia amid increasing cohabitation
Russia has long been characterized by early and universal marriage. After the Soviet Union collapse, the average age of marriage has been rising, and cohabitations have become common. Many scholars explain the causes of this trend through the perspective of the Second Demographic Transition. The aim of this research was to define the nature of cohabitations in Russia, reveal the factors of entrance to non-marital unions in order to discuss how and why non-marital union is implicated in recent dialogues about family policy. In order to achieve the aim, such methods as Event History Analysis and Sequence Analysis were used.
Cohabitation is not a complete alternative to marriage in Russia yet, but the proportion of Russians from various social strata for whom cohabitation does not grow into a marriage is on the rise. Young, non-religious, educated people from big cities have started to consider non-marital union appropriate for childbearing and childrearing. It demonstrates that cohabitation is close to becoming an independent social institution which is a trend of great concern to policymakers due to its implications for children’s well-being.