Familialism in Spain: Do Policies Match Individual Preferences?

Tuesday, 12 July 2016: 17:00
Location: Hörsaal 41 (Main Building)
Oral Presentation
Isabel VALARINO, University of Lausanne, Switzerland
Spain has historically assigned a large responsibility to the family in guaranteeing individuals’ well being. Women have been expected to provide care to dependent family members, in particular the children and the elderly. However, in the last decades, the familialistic orientation of the Spanish welfare state has eroded, as a response to a series of transformations; including women’s labor market participation and their increased need for measures enabling work and family life reconciliation. This paper adopts the perspective of individuals and analyses their preferences towards the provision and the financing of child- and elderly care. Who should be the primary actor responsible for care work between the family, the state and the market and third sector organizations?

The paper has two objectives. First, I compare the current child- and elderly care policies implemented and determine the extent to which they match individuals’ preferences. Second, I determine the social determinants of care work responsibility preferences. I use 2012 representative survey data on Spanish residents collected in the frame of the International Social Survey Programme (module Family and Changing Gender Roles IV). The sample size comprises 2595 respondents aged 18 and over. I apply cluster analysis techniques to four survey items in order to distinguish patterns of individual preferences regarding the organization of care work between familialistic, state, or market/third sector orientations. I then apply multinomial logistic regression in order to assess the influence of a set of independent variables for predicting these care work preference patterns. Drawing on two theories – self-interest and ideational theories – used in welfare attitudinal research, I assess the influence of sex, parenthood, age, employment status, education, income, political orientation and gender ideology on care work responsibility preferences.