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Parental health, informal support, and geographic mobility between parents and adult children

Journal Contribution - Journal Article

Intergenerational solidarity is crucial to address the needs of ageing people. Numerous studies have identified geographic distance between parents and children as an important determinant of intergenerational support. This paper aims to examine to what extent parents' functional disabilities and children's support involvement relate to changing geographic parent-child proximity. We also take a comparative approach to study patterns of geographic mobility of parents and children across Europe. Multilevel multinomial logistic regression analysis is performed on data from the Survey of Health, Ageing and Retirement in Europe for 15 countries. The analysis shows that rapid declines in the functional abilities of parents often lead to intergenerational coresidence. In addition, we find that children start and continue to support most frequently when proceeding to coresidence, although similar results appear for moves leading to a parent-child distance closer than 5 km. Moves bringing parents and children closer together are most prevalent in southern European countries. In contrast to our expectations, the analysis also suggests that parental health declines connect more with moves to coresidence in central and northern European countries compared with the southern region.
Journal: Population Space and Place
ISSN: 1544-8444
Volume: 99
Pages: 1 - 19
Publication year:2019
Keywords:Geosciences & technology, General, regional & communitiy issues