Introduction: The remarkable growth of older adults represents a challenge for our societies. The population of aging requires adjustments that sometimes are difficult to achieve for already stressed welfare systems. In this context, intergenerational solidarity may play a central role. Demographic shifts over the past century have also increased the percentage of grandchildren who, as young adults, have living grandparents. Adult grandchildren could become an important source of intergenerational solidarity, but few studies have explored intergenerational relations, including grandparents, adult children, and adult grandchildren. None to our knowledge have examined which aspects of intergenerational solidarity affect the positive view of elders, positive expectations toward the future, and old-young divides. Objectives: We aimed to explore three critical dimensions of intergenerational solidarity (affinity, contact, and instrumental exchange) and examine how each component is related to positive views of elders, positive expectations toward the future, and the young elders divide. Methods: The study was conducted in Italy; it involved 420 participants divided into 140 triads. Semi-structure interviews with elders, adult grandchildren, and parents were used to measure intergenerational solidarity. Each triad was composed of 140 grandparents aged 65 to 92, 140 parents aged 39 to 72, 140 grandchildren aged 17 to 50. Results: Affinity variables such as perceived similarity, sharing the same micro-culture, and giving importance to grandchild–grandparent relation, promoted a positive view of aging, positive expectations toward the future, and lower perceptions of a young-elders divide in society. The contact variables had mixed effects. Conclusion: Overall our results highlight that mostly affinity variables promoted a positive view of aging, positive expectations toward the future and reduced the perception of the generational gap.

Intergenerational solidarity in triads of adult grandchild, parent, and grandparent: the positive view of elders, positive expectations towards the future and young-elders divide / Mebane, M. E.; Pezzuti, L.. - In: EDUCATIONAL GERONTOLOGY. - ISSN 0360-1277. - 46:9(2020), pp. 1-13. [10.1080/03601277.2020.1785672]

Intergenerational solidarity in triads of adult grandchild, parent, and grandparent: the positive view of elders, positive expectations towards the future and young-elders divide

Mebane M. E.
Primo
;
Pezzuti L.
Ultimo
2020

Abstract

Introduction: The remarkable growth of older adults represents a challenge for our societies. The population of aging requires adjustments that sometimes are difficult to achieve for already stressed welfare systems. In this context, intergenerational solidarity may play a central role. Demographic shifts over the past century have also increased the percentage of grandchildren who, as young adults, have living grandparents. Adult grandchildren could become an important source of intergenerational solidarity, but few studies have explored intergenerational relations, including grandparents, adult children, and adult grandchildren. None to our knowledge have examined which aspects of intergenerational solidarity affect the positive view of elders, positive expectations toward the future, and old-young divides. Objectives: We aimed to explore three critical dimensions of intergenerational solidarity (affinity, contact, and instrumental exchange) and examine how each component is related to positive views of elders, positive expectations toward the future, and the young elders divide. Methods: The study was conducted in Italy; it involved 420 participants divided into 140 triads. Semi-structure interviews with elders, adult grandchildren, and parents were used to measure intergenerational solidarity. Each triad was composed of 140 grandparents aged 65 to 92, 140 parents aged 39 to 72, 140 grandchildren aged 17 to 50. Results: Affinity variables such as perceived similarity, sharing the same micro-culture, and giving importance to grandchild–grandparent relation, promoted a positive view of aging, positive expectations toward the future, and lower perceptions of a young-elders divide in society. The contact variables had mixed effects. Conclusion: Overall our results highlight that mostly affinity variables promoted a positive view of aging, positive expectations toward the future and reduced the perception of the generational gap.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11573/1500619
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