Archives of Sexual Behavior

, Volume 45, Issue 7, pp 1787–1798

Social Attitudes Toward Adoption by Same-Sex Couples in Europe

Original Paper

DOI: 10.1007/s10508-016-0691-9

Cite this article as:
Takács, J., Szalma, I. & Bartus, T. Arch Sex Behav (2016) 45: 1787. doi:10.1007/s10508-016-0691-9


By examining social attitudes on same-sex adoption in 28 European countries, we highlighted individual and country-level factors that can determine the level of social acceptance or rejection of this specific kind of adoption. This article contributes to the literature on social acceptance of lesbian women, gay men, and their adoption practices in Europe and directs attention to several previously under-researched aspects of social attitudes on same-sex parenting rights. The empirical base of this study was the fourth round of the European Values Study, conducted in 2008–2010. Using ordered logistic regressions, we examined the impact of several individual and country-level characteristics on the agreement level with the statement that “Homosexual couples should be able to adopt children.” We found strong relationships between social attitudes towards adoption by same-sex couples and the existence of legislation permitting same-sex adoption practices at the country-level, as well as some individual attitudes, including those related to traditional family formation practices, “justification of homosexuality,” and (non-) preference for homosexual neighbors. Our findings indicate a shift within the potential interpretational contexts of adoption by same-sex couples from a narrow sexuality-based framework to a different and possibly much wider context of family and parenting practices.


Same-sex adoption Homosexuality Social attitudes European values study 

Funding information

Funder NameGrant NumberFunding Note
Seventh Framework Programme
  • 320116

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute of Sociology, Centre for Social SciencesHungarian Academy of SciencesBudapestHungary
  2. 2.FORSSwiss Centre of Expertise in the Social SciencesLausanneSwitzerland
  3. 3.Institute of Sociology and Social PolicyCorvinus University of BudapestBudapestHungary

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