Formal childcare as an option to employed parents to reconcile work and family. The case of France, Italy, and Spain

Marija Mamolo, Vienna Institute of Demography
Lucia Coppola, Instituto Nazionale di Statistica (ISTAT)
Mariachiara Di Cesare, London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE)

Nowadays the availability and accessibility of formal childcare services represent an option for employed parents to reconcile family and work. The increasing female labour force participation has emphasized the relevance of family policies aiming at supporting parents, and in turn the country's level of fertility. The aim of this paper is the analysis of the main socio-economic factors affecting the use of formal childcare in France, Italy, and Spain using the 2006 EU-SILC data (logistic model on children aged 0-3). Preliminary results suggest that in France the use of formal childcare is significantly determined by household characteristics, namely parents' employment and income. In Italy and Spain it is mainly mother's characteristics which shape the use of formal childcare, being particularly important for working mothers. Here the use of formal childcare is quite often hampered by the service availability rather than by household's characteristics and needs.

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Presented in Poster Session 2: Fertility, family and children