Fertility history and intergenerational exchanges in later life

Cecilia Tomassini, University of Molise
Sanna L Read, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (LSHTM)
Pearl Dykstra, Netherlands Interdisciplinary Demographic Institute (NIDI)

Many studies have shown an association between fertility indicators and family exchange, that is, older individuals with more children are less likely to live alone and more likely to have contact with a least one of them. Given the growing concern about reduced and later fertility and possible consequences for support to older people expressed by policy makers, the aim of this study is to explore the effects of fertility quantum and timing on intergenerational exchanges in later life. This association will be investigated in three countries; Italy a “familistic” country, the Netherlands (where the generous State provision of services may affect the strength of such an association), and England, which has a “liberal” welfare regime. Our results show that the effect of parity on some indicators of family exchanges is limited in Italy, while mother's age at birth has strong influence on coresidence, but not on contact with children.

Presented in Poster Session 4: Health and ageing