Older Workers and Caregiving in a Global Context: Methodological Challenges and Opportunities in Comparative Analysis
The volume of research on the experiences of employed carers has grown substantially in the last decade within countries, especially developed countries. So too have the range of work-care integration strategies adopted by both public and private sector stakeholders. Comparing experiences across countries with different social, economic and political contexts can help highlight strengths and weaknesses of existing domestic approaches to supporting employed caregivers and reveal alternate approaches for future consideration. This paper draws on the experiences of the authors in attempting to carry out cross-national comparative analyses of existing national survey data on caregiving and employment in three Commonwealth countries, as well as other contributions to a forthcoming special issue of Journal of Cross Cultural Gerontology, to identify key benefits, and methodological challenges, to conducting such comparative analyses. We conclude with recommendations for measures that will facilitate future comparative research on combining paid work and unpaid care work.