Projects focussing on work-life balance in families and for working women, as well as fostering family-friendly workplaces, engaging fathers and promoting the financial well-being of families.
WORKCARE SYNERGIES is a project funded by the European Commission within the Seventh Framework Program with the aim of disseminating research findings of previous EU Framework Program projects regarding work-care. Dissemination took place in seven countries via local key mediator teams consisting of local researchers and knowledge transfer and communication specialists. WORKCARE SYNERGIES works to collect findings of Framework Program projects and make these available to NGOs, policy makers, unions, companies, local actors, interested parties, etc. A total of 20 research projects on how families combine work-childcare responsibilities in different social settings were presented at local dissemination events. These events allow for participation in the local discussion and contribution to the development of policy conclusions, giving a voice to expert and private opinions. The project ran from 2010-2011 and was coordinated by the Institute for Advanced Studies Vienna.
The TA2 vision was ‘making communications and engagement easier among groups of people separated in space and time’ and addressed the question of how technology can support family-to-family relationships. Sitting on the nexus between digital agenda and family policy it contributed to developing solutions for relevant aspects of the future of family interaction. Based on the premise that current technology and modern media communication serves best individuals while most people see groups – i.e. families - as their key social unit, TA2 explored how technology can support group to group communication. One of the key objectives of TA2 is to model five new media experiences through which families can nurture their relationships. A brochure illustrating project objectives, structure and partners can be found here. TA2 was an Integrating Project within the Seventh Framework Programme for Research and Technological Development (FP7).
The “Generational approach to the social patterns of relation to work” (SPReW) project was funded under the Seventh Priority of the Sixth European Union (EU) Framework Programme (FP6). It ran from June 2006 to August 2008 and analysed intergenerational dimensions of changes in people’s relation to work in six European countries: Belgium, France, Germany, Hungary, Italy, and Portugal. A key finding is that patterns in people’s relation to work are not primarily impacted by people’s age but also by gender and education. Institutional factors and the type of capitalism have an impact on the relations to work seen in the three generations reviewed. Social tensions between the generations may increase as the generations compete for labour market opportunities. To improve social cohesion, institutional and managerial practices will need to be developed to better align with intergenerational relations.
Reconciling Work and Welfare in Europe (RECWOWE) is a network of excellence (NoE) funded under the Sixth European Union (EU) framework programme (FP6). The network covers seventeen EU countries and research includes projects on family, work, and employment regimes. Aspects of the network’s work are expected to continue under the Seventh EU framework programme (FP7). The final network conference (Brussels, June 15-17, 2011) focused on four research streams: Implementing activation – on the social, economic and political consequences of activation policies; Transforming social protection – on social policy changes aimed at reconciling work and welfare; More jobs, better jobs? - on countries’ capacity and reforms aimed at increasing the number of jobs while sustaining or improving their quality; and Can Europe help? – on the impact of the EU in supporting member states and increasing sociality in the EU.
The Job Mobilities and Family Lives in Europe (JobMob and FamLives) project, funded under the Sixth European Union (EU) framework programme (FP6), looked at the forms of European geographic mobility resulting from labour market demands. It ran from February 2006 to October 2008. The project team members were based in six European countries: Belgium, France, Germany, Poland, Spain and Switzerland. Project findings are summarised in a policy brief, published in December 2008. The project found that about half of Europeans have experience with mobility, primarily daily long-distance commuting. Spatial mobility is more common in knowledge-based jobs than in the industrial sector. A significant increase in mobility is unlikely but may lead to a decrease in European fertility rates, as women in particular could be discouraged from proceeding with family planning.
The Integration of Female Immigrants in Labour Market and Society (FEMIPOL) project, funded under the Sixth European Union (EU) framework programme (FP6), aimed to inform integration policies that increase the competitiveness, economic growth and social cohesion of the EU by highlighting the position of migrant women. Research covered eleven EU countries: Cyprus, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, Poland, Portugal, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden and the United Kingdom, running from February 2006 until January 2008. Findings are presented in a final report. Key findings include the paradoxical coexistence of integration, irregularity and exclusion and the integration dilemma in European societies was also highlighted. Final policy recommendations relate to: the integration of migrant women into the labour market; the informal sectors of the economy; domestic workers; skill enhancement and recognition; civic participation; prostitution and entertainment; residence rights and legislation; and trafficking.
The FAMILY PLATFORMproject, funded under the Seventh European Union (EU) framework programme (FP7), brought together twelve organisations, spanning 24 countries, to help increase the wellbeing of European families by encouraging dialogue between stakeholders about family life. It ran from October 2009 to March 2011 and dealt with major trends in European comparative family research, critical reviews of existing research, possible future conditions and challenges and key questions for future research. Reports were produced for each of these four project aims with the following topics: ‘Research on Families and Family policies in Europe: State of the Art’; a ‘Critical Review of Research on Families and Family Policies in Europe’; a‘Foresight Report: Facets and Preconditions of Wellbeing of Families’; and a report on the ‘Research Agenda on Families and Family Wellbeing for Europe’. The reports are also available on the European Alliance for Families’ website.
The proposed European Research agendarelates to research in the areas of: Family Policy; Care; Life Course and Transitions; Doing Family; Migration and Mobility; Inequalities and Insecurities; as well as Media and New Information Technologies.