Families, Ageing and Social Policy
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Families, Ageing and Social Policy

Intergenerational Solidarity in European Welfare States

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.
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Chapter 10: The Intergenerational Care Potential of Dutch Older Adults in 1992 and 2002

Theo van Tilburg and Suzan van der Pas


Theo van Tilburg and Suzan van der Pas INTRODUCTION It is expected that caring for the older population will be increasingly troublesome in the decades to come. This expectation is based predominantly on demographic developments, that is, an increasing absolute and relative number of older people. As a consequence, the need for care will increase and at the same time the provision of care will diminish because there will be less young and middle-aged people available to provide care. Increasing labour force participation of middle-aged women, traditionally an important category of carers, and increasing geographical mobility will also contribute to decreasing levels of care providing (de Boer 2005). Is this gloomy outlook of decreasing care potential correct? This chapter will address this question by describing the Dutch situation around the turn of the century, specifically focusing on the care potential available within intergenerational relationships. Relationships with adult children are among the most important when it comes to support and care provision to older adults (Broese van Groenou and van Tilburg 1996). Several researchers have studied the reasons behind the ranking of types of supporters for older adults. Litwak has made a major contribution to this field of enquiry with his task specificity model (Litwak and Szelenyi 1969). He proposes that the match between task specificity and type of relationship determines who will provide what type of support to older adults. The model basically states that, since types of relationships vary with respect to proximity, long-term commitment, availability...

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