Father Care-Practices in International Comparison: Do Policies Matter?

Conference at Landshut University of Applied Sciences, Germany on January 16–18, 2020

As a result of social change, the increasing labor market participation of mothers and changing gender attitudes, there are significant changes at the societal as well as the individual level worldwide with regard to attitudes towards and expectations of fatherhood. Parenting is a highly contested, emotionally charged social issue. And in the meantime, also family policy has discovered fathers. The implementation of partner months – so-called "fathers months" in Germany – is now even considered a successful model. In this respect, an influence of social policy measures on paternal care practices can be assumed. However, international comparative research on fatherhood can show that the relation between gender-specific welfare state structures – father policies – and everyday care practices of fathers is much more complex (Adler/Lenz 2016). Even in countries without family policy support of fathers, the child-related involvement of fathers increases (for the U.S. see Adler 2016). In exchange with scientists from different fields and national contexts following topics will be discussed and we call for submission of corresponding poster proposals of empirical works for an exhibition and presentation:

  1. Policies: The internationally different but still relatively low use of “parental leave” by fathers raises questions on the relationship between family policy measures and their use. The focus is therefore set on a comparison of international welfare regimes with regard to family and fathers' policies, but also with regard to labor laws and their consequences for “involved fatherhood”.
  2. Family forms: The pluralization of family forms such as same-sex or patchwork families and the differences of biography trajectories in families require them to be taken into account as well as the social and ethnic differences between families. Consequently, contributions to this field focus on a comparison of fatherhood involvement in different family forms.
  3. Social Change: To what extend do social transformations that find their expression among other things in migratory movements, a change in forms of employment and gender role models, influence developments of father involvement in child care?

Deadlines and Dates:

Poster proposals of max. 300 words and a short scientific CV should be submitted to mikrosoziologie(at)tu-dresden(dot)de by October 31th 2019.

Proposals will be reviewed and notifications will be sent to authors by November 30th 2019.

Do not hesitate to use the email address above, if you have questions regarding the call.

Further Information (PDF)