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The Role of Family Policy Institutions in Explaining Gender-Role Attitudes: A Comparative Multilevel Analysis of Thirteen Industrialized Countries

The Role of Family Policy Institutions in Explaining Gender-Role Attitudes: A... This article examines the role of institutionalized family policy in structuring attitudes towards female labour force participation in 13 industrialized countries. Two different perspectives on explaining the role of family policy institutions are distinguished. According to the first perspective, gender-role attitudes will differ cross-nationally according to the capacity of family policy institutions to reconcile work in the home with work in the paid labour force. According to the second perspective, institutions such as family policies can give rise to a certain collection of norms regarding the ‘proper’ role of women in society. Cross-national variation in family policies will, according to this perspective, have important implications for gender-role attitudes primarily because it will affect what is seen as normatively appropriate behaviour, rather then affecting the returns expected from alternative choices. The empirical analysis, using multilevel regression techniques on data from the International Social Survey Programme (ISSP), indicates that variations in family policy models can contribute significantly to our understanding of cross-national variations in gender-role attitudes. It is also shown that the way gender-role attitudes are measured and conceptualized can have important implications for how cross-national differences in these attitudes are explained. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Journal of European Social Policy SAGE

The Role of Family Policy Institutions in Explaining Gender-Role Attitudes: A Comparative Multilevel Analysis of Thirteen Industrialized Countries

Journal of European Social Policy , Volume 14 (2): 17 – May 1, 2004

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References (48)

Publisher
SAGE
Copyright
Copyright © by SAGE Publications
ISSN
0958-9287
eISSN
1461-7269
DOI
10.1177/0958928704042003
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

This article examines the role of institutionalized family policy in structuring attitudes towards female labour force participation in 13 industrialized countries. Two different perspectives on explaining the role of family policy institutions are distinguished. According to the first perspective, gender-role attitudes will differ cross-nationally according to the capacity of family policy institutions to reconcile work in the home with work in the paid labour force. According to the second perspective, institutions such as family policies can give rise to a certain collection of norms regarding the ‘proper’ role of women in society. Cross-national variation in family policies will, according to this perspective, have important implications for gender-role attitudes primarily because it will affect what is seen as normatively appropriate behaviour, rather then affecting the returns expected from alternative choices. The empirical analysis, using multilevel regression techniques on data from the International Social Survey Programme (ISSP), indicates that variations in family policy models can contribute significantly to our understanding of cross-national variations in gender-role attitudes. It is also shown that the way gender-role attitudes are measured and conceptualized can have important implications for how cross-national differences in these attitudes are explained.

Journal

Journal of European Social PolicySAGE

Published: May 1, 2004

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