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New publication: Andrea Lengerer, Julia H. Schroedter: Patterns and Trends of Same-Sex Partner Choice in Germany

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Andrea Lengerer, Julia H. Schroedter (2022): Patterns and Trends of Same-Sex Partner Choice in Germany. In: Journal of Comparative Family Studies, 53

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This paper analyses the age and educational homogamy of same-sex couples in Germany over a 20-year period from 1996 to 2015. Data of the Microcensus show that cohabiting same-sex couples are less likely to be homogamous than cohabiting different-sex couples, both in terms of age and education. For same-sex couples, gender matters, male same-sex couples being the most diverse. The analyses thus confirm previous results for other European countries. Hitherto, changes in the homogamy of same-sex couples over time had not been studied in Europe, mainly due to data constraints. However, major changes in the visibility and legal acceptance of same-sex couples suggest that their patterns of partner choice are becoming more similar to those of different-sex couples.

The authors' analyses show that the age difference among female same-sex couples has indeed narrowed over time, converging with the age difference among different-sex couples. For male same-sex couples though, there is no clear trend. In terms of educational homogamy, contrary to the authors' assumption, they find a clear decline among same-sex couples of both genders since the 2000s, making them even more dissimilar to different-sex couples.