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The gendered care perspective: a dynamic and systemic approach to intergenerational solidarity.

The sociological field of intergenerational solidarity studies the type and intensity of interactions between adult children and their parents. For upward informal caregiving (children looking after their parents), it has been acknowledged that care arrangements are shaped within families. Although it are individual children who care for their parents, the amount of care a child provides is generally the outcome of a collective family decision. Gender stands out as a determinant of the care a child provides. Caregiving is unfairly weighted against women, especially in male-dominated families. An important feature of informal caregiving is its fluidity. Caregiving in families can be renegotiated at any time, frequently because of changes in the lives of caregivers or shifting needs of the care receiver. This project examines the extent to which caregiving is subject to change, and how this relates to the gender composition of children and other aspects of the family context. Using a rich longitudinal panel, we pursue 4 aims: (1) to examine to what extent the gender composition of siblings affects the care use of parents, (2) to assess the association between gender composition and stability of the adult-child care network, (3) to study the stability and redistribution of the informal care burden and how this relates to siblings' gender composition, and 4) to investigate how the care network and distribution of sibling care vary when parents' care needs change.
Date:1 Jan 2019  →  Today
Disciplines:Generations and intergenerational relations, Sociology of family