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DemoSoc seminar by Mirkka Danielsbacka & Antti O. Tanskanen

DemoSoc seminar by Mirkka Danielsbacka & Antti O. Tanskanen



Grandparenting, health and well-being by Mirkka Danielsbacka & Antti O. Tanskanen


Date: 13/11/19

TIme: 12.00 h

Place: 20.287  (Building Jaume I)



Whether transition to grandparenthood (i.e., having a first grandchild) and active grandparenting (e.g., looking after a grandchild) improve grandparental health and wellbeing are salient questions in contemporary aging societies. These questions were investigated with the longitudinal and cross-national Survey of Health, Ageing and Retirement in Europe (SHARE), including follow-up waves between 2006 and 2015. We analyzed the SHARE data using random-intercept multilevel

regressions and conducted within-person models, which consider an individual’s variation over time. In sub-study 1 we compared an individual’s current well-being as a grandmother or grandfather with her or his earlier well-being, measured before the grandchild was born. It was detected that entry into grandmotherhood was associated with improved quality of life and improved life satisfaction. In sub-study 2 we investigated whether changes in grandchild care influences grandparent health and well-being over time. However, we were able to detect only very limited support indicating that increased grandchild care is associated with improved health and well-being. These findings are discussed with reference to evolutionary social science theories regarding kin ties.


Presentation is based on the following articles:


Tanskanen, A.O., Danielsbacka, M., Coall, D.A. & Jokela, M. (2019). Transition to grandparenthood and subjective well-being in older Europeans: A within-person investigation using longitudinal data. Evolutionary Psychology, 17, 1–12.


Danielsbacka, M., Tanskanen, A.O., Coall, D., & Jokela, M. (2019). Grandparental childcare, health and well-being in Europe: A within-individual investigation of longitudinal data. Social Science & Medicine, 230, 194–203.