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Gesellschaftliche Determinanten produktiven Alterns in Europa

Karsten Hank () and Stephanie Stuck ()
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Stephanie Stuck: Munich Center for the Economics of Aging (MEA), Postal: Amalienstr. 33, D-80799 Munich

No 7152, MEA discussion paper series from Munich Center for the Economics of Aging (MEA) at the Max Planck Institute for Social Law and Social Policy

Abstract: This paper aims to contribute to improving our understanding of the societal determinants of productive ageing beyond formal employment. Based on data from the Survey of Health, Ageing and Retirement in Europe (SHARE) and applying logistic multilevel models, our analysis shows that a substantial portion of the variance between the eleven countries in our study with regard to private engagement in volunteering, informal helping, and caring is due to differences in population composition. In addition, the three macro-level indicators in our study contribute to a further substantial reduction in the between-country variance. While societal images of ageing do not bear a statistically significant association with volunteer work, informal help, or care, our hypotheses concerning a positive relationship between greater political and religious freedom as well as welfare state services and older individuals’ propensity to engage in informal productive activities are largely confirmed. We close with conclusions relevant for social policy and social science, regarding the activation of so far unused productive potentials in the elder population.

Date: 2007-10-19
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