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Social interaction effects in an inter-generational model of informal care giving


  • Lisa Callegaro

    (Department of Economics, University Of Venice C� Foscari)

  • Giacomo Pasini

    () (Department of Economics, University Of Venice C� Foscari; Economics and Organization, School for Advanced Studies in Venice)


We study jointly the health perception of the elderly and the care giving decision of their adult children. Social interactions play a crucial role: elder parents' health perception depends on relations with household members. On the other hand adult children make their care giving decisions strategically, meaning that each of them considers his siblings' decision. We find empirical evidence which support this claim using the 2004 wave of the SHARE survey. We estimate social interaction effects by means of methods taken from the spatial econometric literature. Health perception relation with care giving depends on the determinants of adult children's decision to care: Parents' health may be modelled as a common good for parents and children; the latter's decision may be driven by bequest motives or by pure altruism and/or cultural values. We test implications of the model thanks to the unique features of the SHARE dataset: it is trans--national, allowing to control for cultural and institutional differences, it contains information on health status of over-50 Europeans and details on their social and intergenerational relations.

Suggested Citation

  • Lisa Callegaro & Giacomo Pasini, 2007. "Social interaction effects in an inter-generational model of informal care giving," Working Papers 2007_10, Department of Economics, University of Venice "Ca' Foscari".
  • Handle: RePEc:ven:wpaper:2007_10

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    1. repec:zbw:rwirep:0153 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. repec:ctc:serie1:def4 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. David C. Grabowski & Edward C. Norton & Courtney H. Van Houtven, 2012. "Informal Care," Chapters,in: The Elgar Companion to Health Economics, Second Edition, chapter 30 Edward Elgar Publishing.
    4. Elenka Brenna & Cinzia Di Novi, 2013. "Is caring for elderly parents detrimental to women’s mental health? The influence of the European North-South gradient," DISCE - Working Papers del Dipartimento di Economia e Finanza def004, Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore, Dipartimenti e Istituti di Scienze Economiche (DISCE).
    5. Fevang, Elisabeth & Kverndokk, Snorre & Røed, Knut, 2009. "A model for supply of informal care to elderly parents," HERO On line Working Paper Series 2008:12, Oslo University, Health Economics Research Programme.
    6. repec:eee:hapoch:v1_951 is not listed on IDEAS
    7. Rob Alessie & Viola Angelini & Giacomo Pasini, 2014. "Is It True Love? Altruism Versus Exchange in Time and Money Transfers," De Economist, Springer, vol. 162(2), pages 193-213, June.
    8. Cristina Vilaplana Prieto & Sergi Jiménez-Martín, 2015. "Unmet needs in formal care: kindling the spark for caregiving behavior," International Journal of Health Economics and Management, Springer, vol. 15(2), pages 153-184, June.
    9. Sergi Jiménez-Martín & Cristina Vilaplana Prieto, 2013. "Informal Care and intergenerational transfers in European Countries," Working Papers 2013-25, FEDEA.
    10. Cinzia Di Novi & Elenka Brenna, 2013. "Is caring for elderly parents detrimental for women�s mental health? The influence of the European North-South gradient," Working Papers 2013:23, Department of Economics, University of Venice "Ca' Foscari".
    11. Meng, Annika, 2009. "Do Parents Buy Their Children's Attention?," Ruhr Economic Papers 153, RWI - Leibniz-Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-University Bochum, TU Dortmund University, University of Duisburg-Essen.
    12. Elisabeth Fevang & Snorre Kverndokk & Knut Røed, 2012. "Labor supply in the terminal stages of lone parents’ lives," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 25(4), pages 1399-1422, October.
    13. Annika Meng, 2009. "Do Parents Buy Their Children's Attention?," Ruhr Economic Papers 0153, Rheinisch-Westfälisches Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Universität Dortmund, Universität Duisburg-Essen.

    More about this item


    Insurance; Social SHARE; care giving; social interactions; health; aging;

    JEL classification:

    • L26 - Industrial Organization - - Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior - - - Entrepreneurship

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