Chou, Yueh-Ching (1); Jensen, Per H. (2); Kröger, Teppo (3)
1: National Yang-Ming University, Taiwan; 2: Aalborg University, Denmark; 3: University of Jyväskylä, Finland
Aim. Very few empirical studies have yet focused on care and work reconciliation among grandmothers, particularly on the comparison between different welfare states. This study aims to explore the relations between paid work and regular care responsibility for young children among grandmothers in working age and conduct a comparison between European and East Asian countries. Methods. The study is based on a sample of 1791 grandmothers who participated in a comparative survey (out of in total 9957 women participants aged 25-64), gathered in 12 cities representative 12 countries. Cross tabulations and ANOVA were used to compare whether there are significant differences between those grandmothers who have a regular care responsibility for grandchildren and those grandmothers who do not have such a responsibility. A multiple regression analysis was used to determine whether labor force involvement and different welfare states are associated with these grandmothers’ care responsibility for grandchildren. Results. ANOVA and Chi-Square analyses showed that the grandmothers having care responsibilities for grandchildren had lower involvement in full-time work and were more often married, poorer and older, and had a lower level of education than the grandmothers without such care responsibility. The cities/countries of grandmothers also showed a significant difference; the grandmothers from Nordic countries showed the lowest proportion of having such care responsibility compared to other area EU countries and East Asia. Logistic regressions revealed that the country, marital status and having full-time work were strong factors determining whether grandmothers had such a care responsibility. Conclusion. Care and work reconciliation policies should take working-age grandmothers into account in particular in non-Nordic EU and East Asian countries.