Gender and Territorial Inequalities in Disability-Free Grandparenthood in Italy

Margherita Moretti , Sapienza Università di Roma
Elisa Cisotto , Free University of Bozen-Bolzano
Alessandra De Rose , Sapienza Università di Roma

During the twentieth century Italy has experienced a steep increase in life expectancy and an exceptional decline in fertility; as a result, the first potentially translates into more years of intergenerational overlap, but the second can counterbalance this effect. Grandparenthood is one of those intergenerational relationships most affected by these changes and, happening later in life, health is a major concern in that life stage. These phenomena are evolving over time and are marked by gender and territorial differences. The present study aims at shedding light on the evolution of disability-free grandparenthood at age 65 in Italy, and its gender and territorial inequalities. Data come from the Family and Social Subject survey and mortality risks of 2009 and 2016. Drawing on disability and grandparenthood population prevalence, we apply the Sullivan method to partition life expectancy at age 65 in years spent as disability-free grandparent, grandparent with disability, disability-free grandchild-less and grandchild-less with disability We found that at the age of 65, Italians can expect to live more years as grandparents than grandchild-less, and women can expect to live more grandparent years than men. From 2009 to 2016, as life expectancy increases, disability-free grandparenthood years increase. In 2016, no territorial differences are found in the number of years spent as grandmothers, but differences in disability-free grandparenthood emerge. Men living in the South and Islands, despite having lower life expectancy at 65 than in other macro areas, can expect to live more grandparents years, but just half of them free from disability.

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 Presented in Session 71. Flash Session: Inequalities in Life Expectancy, Disability and Health