Journal of Population Economics

, Volume 30, Issue 3, pp 835–873

Caring for dependent parents: Altruism, exchange or family norm?

  • Justina Klimaviciute
  • Sergio Perelman
  • Pierre Pestieau
  • Jerome Schoenmaeckers
Original Paper

DOI: 10.1007/s00148-017-0635-2

Cite this article as:
Klimaviciute, J., Perelman, S., Pestieau, P. et al. J Popul Econ (2017) 30: 835. doi:10.1007/s00148-017-0635-2


The purpose of this paper is to test alternative models of long-term caring motives. We consider three main motives: pure altruism, exchange and family norm. Our database is the second wave of the Survey of Health, Ageing and Retirement in Europe (SHARE) which allows linking almost perfectly and with complete information children and their parents’ characteristics. Comparing the empirical results to the theoretical models developed, it appears that, depending on the regions analyzed, long-term caring is driven by moderate altruism or by family norm, while Alessie et al. (De Economist 162(2):193–213, 2014), also using SHARE data, stress the importance of exchange motive in intergenerational transfers.


Long-term care Intergenerational transfers Informal care Altruism Exchange Family norm 

JEL Classification

D13 J14 D64 

Funding information

Funder NameGrant NumberFunding Note
Fifth Framework Programme (BE)
  • ID0E5PAE584
National Institute on Aging
  • ID0ENQAE585
Sixth Framework Programme
  • ID0ELRAE586

    Copyright information

    © Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2017

    Authors and Affiliations

    • Justina Klimaviciute
      • 1
    • Sergio Perelman
      • 1
    • Pierre Pestieau
      • 1
      • 2
      • 3
    • Jerome Schoenmaeckers
      • 1
    1. 1.CREPP (Center of Research in Public Economics and Population Economics)HEC-Liège, Management School, Universitè de LiègeLiègeBelgium
    2. 2.CORE, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics, UCLLouvain-la-NeuveBelgium
    3. 3.TSE, Toulouse School of EconomicsUniversité Toulouse 1 CapitoleToulouseFrance

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