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  • 14/08/2014
    Versatile Designs of Life
    Source: © djma - Fotolia.com
    Traditional family patterns are losing popularity in Europe. One example of this is the fact that more and more people are living together without getting married. Cohabitation means different things to different people, and people choose this family arrangement for various reasons. Do these reasons influence their fertility intentions? In a recent study, Nicole Hiekel and Teresa Castro-Martin examine how the different meanings of cohabitation and the intention to have a child are intertwined.
  • 16/06/2014
    “Divorce-Damages” on Education
    Source: © Kzenon - Fotolia.com
    Can parental divorce affect the chances of children to obtain a university degree? By studying divorce in 14 countries (Australia, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Estonia, France, Georgia, Hungary, Italy, Lithuania, Norway, the Netherlands, Romania, and Russia), Fabrizio Bernardi and Jonas Radl explored its long-term consequences on education achievement and found a negative, although relatively small effect.
  • 26/05/2014
    Always a Risk of Divorce
    Source: © drx - Fotolia.com
    To what extent are children suffering when their parents get divorced? That question is not so easy to answer, mainly because of the complexity of this topic. Researchers Steffen Reinhold, Thorsten Kneip and Gerrit Bauer focused on a much more detailed question instead: How are the effects of unilateral divorce laws affecting the well-being of children?
  • 24/04/2014
    Early Life Conditions Can Make You Sick Later
    Source: © Pavla Zakova - Fotolia.com
    Adverse health conditions experienced during individuals’ first year of life increase the risk of sick leave in adulthood. This link, explored in a study by Jonas Helgertz and Mats R. Persson (Lund University, Sweden) is not mediated by socioeconomic circumstances later in life.
  • 31/03/2014
    Older but Fitter
    Source: diego cervo - Fotolia.com
    A rapidly increasing proportion of people in high-income countries are surviving into their tenth decade. This population will continue to grow in the future, both in absolute terms and as a proportion of elderly people. This development raised concerns about the extent of frailty and disability in those age groups and the attached personal and societal costs.
  • 18/03/2014
    Smart Growth - Is the Demographic Dividend an Education Dividend?
    Source: lassedesignen - Fotolia.com
    Countries with a large working-age population tend to become richer quicker than those where this group is smaller in relation to children and elderly people. Jesús Crespo Cuaresma, Wolfgang Lutz and Warren Sanderson show in a recent study that this is mostly due to improvements in educational attainment among the young population, and not due to the fertility decline, as previous analyses claimed.
  • 12/03/2014
    Cross-Border Marriages in Sweden
    Source: © paulmz - Fotolia.com
    Not only has the opening of EU borders led to an expansion of partner markets in Sweden, but globalisation, a general increase in diversity and a growing number of Swedes who travel, work or study abroad have also played a role.
  • 15/01/2014
    Dutiful Daughters
    Source: © Alexander Raths - Fotolia.com
    One feature of ageing societies is an increasing number of older people who need help in their daily activities. A significant share of this help is provided by grown up children, especially by daughters. Across Europe, women are more involved in support activities to their ageing parents than men. A study by Tina Schmid, Martin Brandt and Klaus Haberkern explores whether this gender imbalance can be linked to family-policies.
  • 08/01/2014
    The benefit of having a wife
    Source: © Ingo Bartussek - Fotolia.com
    Public expenditure on care for older people has been rising along with the increasing number of senior citizens, and is expected to rise even more as population ageing continues. Attempts to constrain expenditures have largely focused on enabling older people to live independently longer and stressing the importance of informal caregivers as an alternative to public care. But to what extent and under which conditions can this idea actually be feasible? This question is examined in a new study by Niels Schenk and colleagues, who use the Netherlands as an example.
  • 06/01/2014
    Similar goals, different effects
    Source: © Tyler Olson - Fotolia.com
    Studies comparing the impact of family policies in different countries often ignore country differences in social structures. This is surprising given that the literature on fertility has identified social networks as a key mechanism in explaining fertility intentions. Using an agent-based model, Thomas Fent, Belinda Aparicio Diaz and Alexia Prskawetz integrate the role of social effects into a model of fertility decisions and investigate whether, and to what extent, the effectiveness of family policies is affected by the social structure.
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