Patterns of grandparents' support for caring grandchildren: Italy and Japan

Nobutaka Fukuda, Aoyama Gakuin University
Romina Fraboni, Istituto Nazionale di Statistica (ISTAT)
Hachiro Nishioka, National Institute of Population & Social Security Research
Linda Laura Sabbadini, Instituto Nazionale di Statistica (ISTAT)

The purpose of this comparative research is to investigate the patterns and determinants of grandparents' support for caring their grandchildren in Italy and Japan. The conventional wisdom is that Italian and Japanese families have strong ties between its members. It is, in particular, pointed out that parents in these countries tend to have strong commitment to their children. Enough research has, however, not been done concerning grandparents’ support for their children. Grandparents' assistance for caring their grandchildren may be particular helpful for parents to reconcile employment and childcare. In particular, when a mother with pre-school children is working outside the home, grandparents’ assistance for caring her children will make parental and employment roles more compatible. This might have an influence on her fertility behaviour consequently. However, it has not been enough studied, from an international comparative perspective, what determines grandparents' support for grandchildren's caring and whether grandparents’ help affects their children’s fertility behaviour. In this study, we will employ the Italian and Japanese survey data carried out within the Generations and gender programme, coordinated by Unece. Since they have similar questions about grandparents' support for their children, we can make a comparative analysis of the two countries. By using the data, we will compare Italy with Japan concerning the patterns and determinants of grandparents' support for their child.

  See extended abstract

Presented in Session 33: Ageing and Intergenerational Relationships