The impact of family policies on the provision of market and familial care in an international comparison

Gretchen Donehower, University of California, Berkeley
Fanny Kluge, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research

Recent decades have seen vast changes in how care for the young and the elderly is provided, both within the household by family members and in the marketplace by paid workers. Some of these changes are based in changing gender roles. Family policies have reacted to and been a part of these changes. This paper examines international differences in the provision of child and elder care by comparing the U.S. and Germany, two countries with very different institutional arrangements for care provision and support, with the U.S. providing very little public support for care and Germany having much more substantial in-kind and cash transfer programs. We examine the empirical record to see whether those different policies are reflected in different patterns of care provision in the two countries. Results are examined in the market and in the household, by age and gender.

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Presented in Session 63: Childcare, work and family

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