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Participation of Older Europeans in Volunteer Work

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  • Marcel Erlinghagen
  • Karsten Hank

    ()
    (Munich Center for the Economics of Aging (MEA))

Abstract

Today’s discussion about the growing ‘burden of ageing’ must not neglect the substantial productive potential of the elderly population. Using micro-data from the new ‘Survey of Health, Ageing and Retirement in Europe’ (SHARE), we explore cross-national patterns of volunteering and the relationship between selected socio-demographic characteristics and participation in voluntary work among the population aged 50 and older in 10 countries. Our analysis reveals a clear spatial pattern of volunteering (with higher participation rates in Northern Europe and lower ones in the Mediterranean countries) and shows that particularly age, education, health, and involvement in other social activities matter greatly for the individual’s propensity to engage in volunteer work. Our conclusions stress the need to maintain a contextual perspective in future research on volunteering, accounting for the role of institutions and culture, and support policies and programs designed to encourage elder citizens to make use of their productive potential – for the benefit of themselves and society.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Munich Center for the Economics of Aging (MEA) at the Max Planck Institute for Social Law and Social Policy in its series MEA discussion paper series with number 05071.

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Date of creation: 16 May 2005
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Handle: RePEc:mea:meawpa:05071

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Postal: Munich Center for the Economics of Aging (MEA) at the Max Planck Institute for Social Law and Social Policy, Amalienstraße 33, 80799 München, Germany
Phone: +49/89/38602.442
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References

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  1. David Wise, 1997. "Retirement against the demographic trend: More older people living longer, working less, and saving less?," Demography, Springer, vol. 34(1), pages 83-95, February.
  2. Agar Brugiavini & Tullio Jappelli & Guglielmo Weber, 2002. "The Survey on Health, Aging and Wealth," CSEF Working Papers 86, Centre for Studies in Economics and Finance (CSEF), University of Naples, Italy.
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Cited by:
  1. repec:hal:journl:halshs-00639928 is not listed on IDEAS
  2. Karsten Hank & Stephanie Stuck, 2007. "Gesellschaftliche Determinanten produktiven Alterns in Europa," MEA discussion paper series 07152, Munich Center for the Economics of Aging (MEA) at the Max Planck Institute for Social Law and Social Policy.
  3. Karsten Hank & Hendrik Jürges, 2005. "Gender and the Division of Household Labor in Older Couples: A European Perspective," MEA discussion paper series 05076, Munich Center for the Economics of Aging (MEA) at the Max Planck Institute for Social Law and Social Policy.
  4. Koen P.R. Bartels & Guido Cozzi & Noemi Mantovan, 2011. "Public Spending and Volunteering: "The Big Society", Crowding Out, and Volunteering Capital," Working Papers 2011_09, Durham University Business School.
  5. Karsten Hank & Michael Wagner, 2013. "Parenthood, Marital Status, and Well-Being in Later Life: Evidence from SHARE," Social Indicators Research, Springer, vol. 114(2), pages 639-653, November.
  6. Hank, Karsten & Erlinghagen, Marcel, 1970. "Perceptions of Job Security in Europe’s Ageing Workforce," MEA discussion paper series 09176, Munich Center for the Economics of Aging (MEA) at the Max Planck Institute for Social Law and Social Policy.
  7. Karsten Hank & Marcel Erlinghagen & Anja Lemke, 2005. "Ehrenamtliches Engagement in Europa: Eine vergleichende Untersuchung am Beispiel von Senioren," MEA discussion paper series 05074, Munich Center for the Economics of Aging (MEA) at the Max Planck Institute for Social Law and Social Policy.
  8. repec:hal:cesptp:halshs-00639928 is not listed on IDEAS
  9. Catherine Pollak & Nicolas Sirven, 2011. "The social economy of ageing: Job quality and pathways beyond the labour market in Europe," Documents de travail du Centre d'Economie de la Sorbonne 11066, Université Panthéon-Sorbonne (Paris 1), Centre d'Economie de la Sorbonne.
  10. Thierry Debrand & Nicolas Sirven, 2008. "Promoting Social Participation for Healthy Ageing - A Counterfactual Analysis from the Survey of Health, Ageing, and Retirement in Europe (SHARE)," Working Papers DT7, IRDES institut for research and information in health economics, revised Jan 2008.

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