Unmarried Cohabitation in the Americas: Unveiling the Spatial Dimension

Sheela Kennedy, Albert Esteve Pals, Benot Laplante, Julian Lopez-Cols, Antonio Lopez Gay, Iaki Permanyer, Anna Turu

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaper


This paper presents the map unmarried cohabitation in the Americas. The map offers a large scale cross-national perspective together with small area estimates of cohabitation. Census microdata from 41 countries and more than 17,000 units have been pulled together to map the percentage of cohabitation among women in union aged 25 to 29. From Canada to Argentina, results show inter- and intra-national contrasting regional patterns. The highest rates of cohabitation are found in areas of Central America, the Caribbean, Colombia and Peru. The lowest rates are mainly found in the United States and Mexico. Brazil, Argentina and Chile occupy intermediate positions. In all countries, there is substantial spatial heterogeneity, as indicated by spatial autocorrelation statistics. Our results beg the question as to which forces have shaped these patterns and remind us that such forces need to be taken into account to understand recent patterns and rises in cohabitation.
Original languageEnglish (US)
StatePublished - 2013


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