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Grandparenting and mothersí labour force participation: A comparative analysis using the Generations and Gender Survey

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  • Arnstein Aassve
  • Bruno Arpino
  • Alice Goisis

Abstract

Using data from seven countries drawn from the Generations and Gender Survey, we study the relationship between informal childcare provided by grandparents and mothersí employment. The extent of formal childcare varies substantially across European countries and so does the role of grandparents in helping out rearing children. The extent of grandparenting also depends on their attitudes, which in turn relate to social norms and availability of public childcare, and hence the country context where individuals reside matters considerably. Within families, attitudes toward childcare are associated with attitudes towards womenís working decisions. The fact that we do not observe these attitudes may bias the estimates. By using instrumental variable techniques we find that only in some countries mothersí employment is positively and significantly associated with grandparents providing childcare. In other countries, once we control for unobserved attitudes we do not find this effect.

Suggested Citation

  • Arnstein Aassve & Bruno Arpino & Alice Goisis, 2011. "Grandparenting and mothers√≠ labour force participation: A comparative analysis using the Generations and Gender Survey," Working Papers 036, "Carlo F. Dondena" Centre for Research on Social Dynamics (DONDENA), Università Commerciale Luigi Bocconi.
  • Handle: RePEc:don:donwpa:036
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    3. Daniela Del Boca, 2002. "The effect of child care and part time opportunities on participation and fertility decisions in Italy," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 15(3), pages 549-573.
    4. Wolff, Francois-Charles & Laferrere, Anne, 2006. "Microeconomic models of family transfers," Handbook on the Economics of Giving, Reciprocity and Altruism, in: S. Kolm & Jean Mercier Ythier (ed.), Handbook of the Economics of Giving, Altruism and Reciprocity, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 13, pages 889-969, Elsevier.
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    Cited by:

    1. Frimmel, Wolfgang & Halla, Martin & Schmidpeter, Bernhard & Winter-Ebmer, Rudolf, 2017. "Grandmothers’ Labor Supply," Economics Series 336, Institute for Advanced Studies.
    2. Valeria Bordone & Bruno Arpino & Arnstein Aassve, 2012. "Policy perspectives of grandparenting in Europe," Working Papers 051, "Carlo F. Dondena" Centre for Research on Social Dynamics (DONDENA), Università Commerciale Luigi Bocconi.
    3. Fabian Dehos & Marie Paul, 2017. "The Effects of After-School Programs on Maternal Employment," SOEPpapers on Multidisciplinary Panel Data Research 905, DIW Berlin, The German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP).
    4. Pearl A. Dykstra & Aafke Komter, 2012. "Generational interdependencies in families," Demographic Research, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany, vol. 27(18), pages 487-506.

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    Keywords

    female labour market participation; grandparents; childcare; attitudes; omitted variable bias;
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