Families, Ageing and Social Policy

Families, Ageing and Social Policy

Intergenerational Solidarity in European Welfare States

Globalization and Welfare series

Edited by Chiara Saraceno

This important book offers valuable insights into the way in which social policies and welfare state arrangements interact with family and gender models. It presents the most up-to-date research in the field, based on a variety of national and comparative sources and using different theoretical and methodological approaches. The authors address different forms of support (care, financial, emotional) and employ a bi-directional perspective, exploring both giving and receiving across generations. They illustrate that understanding how generations interact in families helps to reformulate the way issues of intergenerational equity are discussed when addressing the redistributive impact of the welfare state through pensions and health services.

Chapter 13: Reliable Bonds? A Comparative Perspective of Intergenerational Support Patterns Among Migrant Families in Germany

Helen Baykara-Krumme

Subjects: development studies, family and gender policy, social policy and sociology, ageing, comparative social policy, family and gender policy, sociology and sociological theory, welfare states


Helen Baykara-Krumme INTRODUCTION: AGEING IN MIGRATION When the newly recruited migrant workers from Mediterranean countries arrived in Germany, they expected to return home for good after only a couple of years. This occurred in the middle of the last century. Now many have spent more than 40 years in Germany and have abandoned their plans to return; the host country has become their home (cf. BMFSFJ 2000, BMFSFJ 2005). As this cohort of former migrant workers grows older, they are provoking an enormous demographic shift in the foreign population. In 1994, the share of elderly above 60 years of age with a non-German passport reached 5.5 per cent, and amounted to 10.9 per cent only ten years later (797 000). By 2010, the foreign elderly population is expected to have increased to approximately 1.3 million, and to have reached 2.5 million by the year 2030 (Bauer et al. 2006). The foreign population in Germany is highly heterogeneous and not all elderly are former migrant workers. However, about 50 per cent have been living in Germany for 30 years and longer, that is, a large part immigrated during the recruitment period between 1955 and 1973. Only 9 per cent immigrated in the past ten years, whereas 5 per cent were born in Germany. The Turkish population represents more than 27 per cent, followed by citizens from former Yugoslavia.1 Socio-political interest has been directed towards the life situation and specific needs of the migrant elderly. One important component is the potential...

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