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Attitudes and preferences towards future old age support amongst tomorrow’s elders in China

Attitudes and preferences towards future old age support amongst tomorrow’s elders in China
Attitudes and preferences towards future old age support amongst tomorrow’s elders in China
Background: The life course experiences of those born in China from the late 1950s to early 1970s have been very different to those of their predecessors; they may not be able to, or wish to, rely on their family for support in later life in the future.

Objective: We investigated the attitudes towards current provision of old-age support and preferences for their future old-age living arrangements amongst individuals aged 40‒55, representing the next generation of China’s older people.

Methods: Using data from the 2013 Chinese Household Finance Survey, we made multi-variate analyses focussed on understanding the roles of family structure, socioeconomic status, and current patterns of intergenerational support in shaping attitudes and preferences towards old-age support among today’s mid-lifers.

Results: Attitudes and preferences towards old-age support are shaped by relations within the family, which in turn are affected by broader historical and contemporary social, economic, and cultural conditions. Specifically, the number of children, having a son, Hukou status, and education influence people’s attitudes and preferences. The results also point to important gender and cohort differences. One unexpected finding is that around a quarter of Chinese mid-life women living in urban areas and with just one adult child are actively considering the option of institutional care for their own old age, highlighting that social norms around care in later life are shifting.

Contribution: This study advances understanding of how decisions in old-age care relate to individuals’ life course and to changing family structures in China.
1435-9871
285-314
Qin, Min
10d55bfb-f7e6-409a-bcc5-6d2ba1f743e8
Falkingham, Jane
8df36615-1547-4a6d-ad55-aa9496e85519
Evandrou, Maria
cd2210ea-9625-44d7-b0f4-fc0721a25d28
Vlachantoni, Athina
06a52fbb-f2a0-4c81-9fbc-d6efc736c6cb
Qin, Min
10d55bfb-f7e6-409a-bcc5-6d2ba1f743e8
Falkingham, Jane
8df36615-1547-4a6d-ad55-aa9496e85519
Evandrou, Maria
cd2210ea-9625-44d7-b0f4-fc0721a25d28
Vlachantoni, Athina
06a52fbb-f2a0-4c81-9fbc-d6efc736c6cb

Qin, Min, Falkingham, Jane, Evandrou, Maria and Vlachantoni, Athina (2020) Attitudes and preferences towards future old age support amongst tomorrow’s elders in China. Demographic Research, 43, 285-314, [11]. (doi:10.4054/DemRes.2020.43.11).

Record type: Article

Abstract

Background: The life course experiences of those born in China from the late 1950s to early 1970s have been very different to those of their predecessors; they may not be able to, or wish to, rely on their family for support in later life in the future.

Objective: We investigated the attitudes towards current provision of old-age support and preferences for their future old-age living arrangements amongst individuals aged 40‒55, representing the next generation of China’s older people.

Methods: Using data from the 2013 Chinese Household Finance Survey, we made multi-variate analyses focussed on understanding the roles of family structure, socioeconomic status, and current patterns of intergenerational support in shaping attitudes and preferences towards old-age support among today’s mid-lifers.

Results: Attitudes and preferences towards old-age support are shaped by relations within the family, which in turn are affected by broader historical and contemporary social, economic, and cultural conditions. Specifically, the number of children, having a son, Hukou status, and education influence people’s attitudes and preferences. The results also point to important gender and cohort differences. One unexpected finding is that around a quarter of Chinese mid-life women living in urban areas and with just one adult child are actively considering the option of institutional care for their own old age, highlighting that social norms around care in later life are shifting.

Contribution: This study advances understanding of how decisions in old-age care relate to individuals’ life course and to changing family structures in China.

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Accepted/In Press date: 15 May 2020
Published date: 24 July 2020

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 443006
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/443006
ISSN: 1435-9871
PURE UUID: 3ecd28f4-52c4-42e5-a6c5-32d38afd5573
ORCID for Min Qin: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-5941-9979
ORCID for Jane Falkingham: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-7135-5875
ORCID for Maria Evandrou: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-2115-9358
ORCID for Athina Vlachantoni: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0003-1539-3057

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Date deposited: 05 Aug 2020 16:35
Last modified: 18 Feb 2021 17:30

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