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Participation of Older Europeans in Volunteer Work

Author

Listed:
  • 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.

Suggested Citation

  • Marcel Erlinghagen & Karsten Hank, 2005. "Participation of Older Europeans in Volunteer Work," MEA discussion paper series 05071, Munich Center for the Economics of Aging (MEA) at the Max Planck Institute for Social Law and Social Policy.
  • Handle: RePEc:mea:meawpa:05071
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    File URL: http://mea.mpisoc.mpg.de/uploads/user_mea_discussionpapers/0v0ohjjzj0wt6j7e_dp71-05.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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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;Population Association of America (PAA), 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. 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.
    2. Bruno Arpino & Valeria Bordone, 2017. "Regular provision of grandchild care and participation in social activities," Review of Economics of the Household, Springer, vol. 15(1), pages 135-174, March.
    3. Karsten Hank & Michael Wagner, 2013. "Parenthood, Marital Status, and Well-Being in Later Life: Evidence from SHARE," Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 114(2), pages 639-653, November.
    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 & 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.
    6. 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.
    7. 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.
    8. 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.
    9. 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.
    10. Holger Lengfeld & Jessica Ordemann, 2014. "Occupation, Prestige, and Voluntary Work in Retirement: Empirical Evidence from Germany," SOEPpapers on Multidisciplinary Panel Data Research 686, DIW Berlin, The German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP).
    11. repec:hal:journl:halshs-00639928 is not listed on IDEAS

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