What Are the Risks, for Children, of Family Disruption? European Comparisons

Didier Breton, Université de Strasbourg and Institut National d'Études Démographiques (INED)
France Prioux, Institut National d'Études Démographiques (INED)

This study applies an original approach by adopting the children's standpoint to observe changes in family trajectories, to measure changes in the risk of family disruption (i.e. parental separation) by child's age and cohort, and to identify the parental characteristics associated with the highest risk of childhood exposure to disruption. Data from the GGS surveys conducted in the 2000s in several European countries can be used for these analyses as they include complete family event histories of adult respondents (birth of children, union formation, separation). Pursuing research already carried out in France, we broaden the comparison to other European countries in the Generations and Gender programme (Belgium, Italy, Norway, the Netherlands) to identify the countries where the risk of childhood exposure to parental separation is highest, and to see whether the characteristics of the most unstable parental couples are shared across countries.

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Presented in Session 131: Family Instability