Category Archives: Meeting in Luxembourg

The impact of Interfasol: participant survey

INTERFASOL SURVEY –  Impact of participation to COST IS1311 

A survey was administered to INTERFASOL members in April 2018

Forty one responses were gathered, 56% are from inclusiveness countries, 70% from MC and WG members, as the remaining  were from ECIs’ TS and STSM participants. 46% belong to INTERFASOL since the kick-off meeting, and 39% entered during the 1st or 2nd year; 49% were senior researchers; 28% participated in 75% of the meetings and Conferences, and 30% in 3 or less.  

The survey asked to indicate whether participation in Interfasol COST Action IS1311 allowed some progress in specific aspects of their professional life:  59% of the respondent referred more than 3 benefits.

More precisely, INTERFASOL participation improved:

  • their research network = 88%;   
  • their knowledge = 66%;   
  • their skills = 41%;   
  • their projects = 32%;   
  • their social and political engagement = 27%;   
  • their career = 22%;  
  • their student network = 5%;  
  • their job prospect = 2%.  

Moreover, results showed that significant differences are observed among ECIs, researchers who had 8 to 15 years after PhD (YR) and established researchers(ER): 36% of ECIs and 43% of (YR) explicitly reported positive INTERFASOL impact on their career, while only 5% of ER did so; 81% of younger researcher (ECIs + YR) reported a positive impact in terms of knowledge development, while this is the case for only 50% of ER. No differences among younger and more established researchers are observed in the remaining benefits.

Questions about short and long terms benefits revealed also more specific impacts of INTERFASOL, such as :

  • Be aware about the implication of interdisciplinarity and doing collaborative research, open network to other discipline.   
  • Develop joint grant proposals (some were a direct consequence of STSM), building consortia and collaboration to European projects (E.G. willingness to apply for another COST Action).   
  • Fostering personal engagement and improve publications in the intergenerational research field.   
  • Meeting young researchers interested in similar issues and staying connected with a number of them.   
  • Mentoring young researchers.   
  • Being aware about the need for outcomes diffusion to policy makers.    

We can conclude that the global impact of INTERFASOL participation is very positive, either for ECI’s, career young (YR) or more established researchers (EC). Most of them pointed out several professional benefits, not only in collaborative terms through the expansion of their research network, but also in terms of the improvement of their own investment in the intergenerational and family solidarity domain; they also mentioned their increased awareness of the need for academics to become more involved with stakeholders, from a mutually enriching perspective.





The INTERFASOL final conference, 18-20 April 2018, University of Luxembourg

The INTERFASOL final conference which took place at the University of Luxembourg hosted more than 100 participants, including interested researchers and stakeholders from  Luxembourg as well as international guests from 28 countries. An invited symposium on Old-Age and Social Exclusion brought members from UK, Italy, Ireland and Luxembourg of another COST Action (ROSEnet) and INTERFASOL together. A further symposium on Intergenerational Solidarity and Technology was organised at the pre-conference presenting work carried out by the life-span developmental research unit at the University of Luxembourg, meeting the high interest of INTERFASOL members. Further, 4 symposia with 17 presentations of INTERFASOL members were organised and 4 keynote lectures of internationally renowned scholars from different disciplines in the fields of family and cultural research took place. A round table gave also the opportunity for exchange among stakeholders and academics: 7 stakeholders and policy makers (including the Luxembourg Minister of Family and Integration) from Luxembourg took part in this round table on “Family Solidarity, Ageing and Migration”

See also:

Conference program

Slides of presentations

Video of the round table “Family Solidarity, Ageing & Migration

Video of a keynote lecture by Prof. Dr. Howard Litwin (Israel): Intergenerational transfers in Europe: What can we learn from SHARE?,  introduced by Prof. Dr. Claudine Attias-Donfut (France)

Slides from Interfasol Final Conference are available for download

See also: INTERFASOL Conference Program

  • Pearl A. Dykstra (Erasmus University Rotterdam): Cross-national differences in intergenerational family relations: the influence of public policy arrangements
  • Howard Litwin (Israel Gerontological Data Center, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem) Intergenerational Transfers in Europe: What can we Learn from SHARE? (Video and slides)
  • Afsaneh Abrilahij & Thomas Boll (University of Luxembourg): Barriers and facilitators for the use of assistive technologies for activities of daily living
  • Giovanni Lamura, Veerle Draulans, Francesco Barbabella, Valentina Hlebec, Rytis Maskeliūnas and Anu Siren: Social Exclusion and Service Use in Older Age: Recent Evidence from the European Context
  • Gražina Rapolienė (Lithuanian Social Research Centre) Lighting the Shadows of Social Life
  • Sandra P. Alves (University of Porto) Development of Family Resilience in Pediatric Palliative Care Settings
  • Katarzyna Lubiewska (University of Warsaw, Warsaw, Poland): Intergenerational relations between self-construals of independence and interdependence across family solidarity patterns
  • Laura Dryjanska (Biola University): Silver Universe of Intergenerational Solidarity
  • Marjolein Broese van Groenou (VU University Amsterdam): Nurturing intergenerational family solidarity: examples from the Netherlands
  • Daniela Barni, Francesca Danioni: Motivations for Agreement with Parental Values: A Key for Understanding Intergenerational Transmission of Values
  • Hatice Celebi, Nafiye Cigdem Aktekin (Acibadem University): Why do Value Transmission between Generations on the Concept of Intergenerational Solidarity Matter for School Education?
  • Lj. Kaliterna Lipovčan, A. Brajša-Žganec, Z. Prizmić Larsen, R. Franc and I. Sučić: Positive and negative life events and well-being across age groups
  • Ursula Trummer (University of Vienna) Intergenerational Solidarity among migrants living in socio-economic deprivation
  • Arseniy Svynarenko (Finnish Youth Research Society): Urban Encounters with Strangers – the ICT and Young People’s Experiences of Adult Social Control in Public Places in Helsinki
  • Martina Brandt, Christian (TU Dortmund): Inequality and intergenerational support in Europe
  • Bethan Winter, Vanessa Burholt (Swansea University): The influence of Time and Context on Social Exclusion from Social Relations in Rural Areas of Wales
  • Catherine Coppée (UMONS): Towards a Modelling of the Practices of Intergenerational Family Solidarities in Contexts of Single Parenting: the Benefits of a STSM at Cnav in Paris
  • Joyce Aguiar, Marisa Matias, Anne Marie Fontaine (University of Porto),  Life satisfaction in unemployed couples: the role of family cohesion and gender effects
  • Anabela Campinho, GraçaSilva & Raquel Barbosa (University of Porto),  “Give and receive”: the impact of an intergenerational program on institutionalized children and old adults.
  • Beate Schwarz, Belinda Berweger, & Jonathan Bennett, BEGIN – Enhancing social integration of immigrants with an intergenerational mentoring program
  • More coming soon
Download slides in pdf: Cross-national differences in intergenerational family relations: the influence of public policy arrangements

Abstract: Focusing mostly on Europe, I will talk about how the research on cross-national differences in intergenerational family relations has moved from basic descriptions to a focus on understanding how support exchanges are shaped by macro-level processes. A key issue concerns generational interdependence, the extent to which public policy arrangements impose reliance on older and younger family members or enable individual autonomy. Real theoretical progress is visible in three areas of research. The first pertains to analyses at the micro level of how family members actually respond to the incentives that different macro contexts provide. The generosity or restrictedness of public provisions variably releases or necessitates normative obligations in interdependent family relationships. The second area of progress involves analyses of the implications of specific policies rather than policy packages for gender and socioeconomic inequality. The third area of progress is a more nuanced view on the familialism-individualism divide. These three areas provide inspiring examples for future investigations.

Download slides in pdf: Barriers and facilitators for the use of assistive technologies for activities of daily living

Abstract: Many older people have functional impairments which increase their risk of losing the ability to live autonomously and to become dependent on care by others. However, assistive technologies (ATs) can help to overcome some limitations of activities of daily living and can thus be assumed to prevent, delay or reduce the need for personal long-term care as well as the burden on caring family members (e.g., spouses, adult children). Yet, the use rate of ATs is still rather low. This paper reviews positive effects of ATs and factors that influence their use. We performed systematic literature searches in PsycINFO, MEDLINE, and Google scholar databases. We found convergent results that the use of ATs for several kinds of activities of daily living such as self-care and mobility was associated with a reduced amount of self-reported personal (in particular informal) care hours. Regarding factors of ATs use, we found that feeling loneliness, cognitive impairments, and difficulty of use were some of barriers for the use of ATs. There is converging evidence that indicators of situation of need (in particular: disabilities in preforming self-care activities) are associated with an increased use of ATs. Slight to moderate functional limitations, chronic illnesses, and home-based training were some of the facilitators for the use of ATs. We concluded with recommendations for further improvement of studies relevant to ATs use.

  Download slides in pdf: Social Exclusion and Service Use in Older Age

Abstract: This presentation will provide an overview of recent trends observed in Europe with regard to service use in older age, paying attention to their implications in terms of social exclusion. Data will come from different secondary sources analysed through a literature review carried out within the EU-funded COST Action ROSEnet. As highlighted by available findings, the lack of or a difficult access to services of different kinds – such as for instance transportation, care or banking services – contribute to social exclusion in older age, especially in rural contexts and among the digitally unskilled. Challenges in three critical policy areas will be particularly illustrated: care services, transportation and ICTs. As for the first, findings show that material deprivation might be prevented by public investments in social protection and healthcare; but also that inadequate training of health professionals makes it more difficult for vulnerable groups to use services. With regard to transportation, lack of transports might exclude older adults from employment, shopping, cultural & religious activities. When this is the case, driving cessation implies a significant decrease in social integration and connectedness, so spatial planning should become a key component of policy measures in this area. Finally, ICT-based tools might represent promising means to improve access to different services. To this purpose, however, digital literacy represents a crucial factor, and efforts are needed to improve it, especially among the least educated groups, as this would contribute also to make the use of ICT easier to improve safety and socialization in later life.

Download slides in pdf: Lighting the Shadows of Social Life

Abstract:  One of key insights brought from Interfasol Training School in Keele (2015) was the lesson that negative results of a research might be of striking importance: an absent intergenerational conflict was presented as outcome of an qualitative research by T.Scharf. Now, 3 years later, I find myself taking part in two research projects related to family and exploring the absent – in projects on childlessness and single living older people:

  • „Childlessness in Lithuania: sociocultural changes and individual experiences in modern society“ (contract No. S-MOD-17-3),
  • „Older people living alone: trends, profiles and challenges to intergenerational integration“ (contract No. GER-001/2017).

How the absence is legitimated and made meaningful? As noted in “sociology of nothing” (Scott, 2018), in both cases here is entered the zone of ambivalence floating in various aspects between freedom of choice and loneliness, independence and belonging, childfreeness and childlessness.

But what is common in both research cases before interpretations – the difficulties to gather data. In both projects we perform qualitative studies. In the project of single living elderly a group of researchers collected 27 interviews – and got 19 rejections. In the case of childlessness is even more difficult: rejections start from the environment of potential informants. Friends of childless women hesitate to ask them about possibility of such interview motivating sensitivity of the topic or that they never discussed the issue (being 50-70 years old). After 3 rejections I succeeded to collect 5 interviews. One of them was rejected for further use in a week after the interview.

It is clear that researchers try to violate margins of privacy investigating aspects of informants lives very likely covered even from themselves. While reflecting the role of researcher, questions of ethics (possible harm to informants), methodology (how to get voices of most excluded elderly) and quality of research (what part of social exclusion or of childlessness experiences we investigate involving only those keen to participate) rise, which could be discussed in the symposium of former trainees.

  Download slides in pdf: Development of Family Resilience in Paediatric Palliative Care Settings

Abstract: Illnesses that threaten and / or limit the child’s life have a profound individual and systemic impact, so that emotional, physical, financial, spiritual and social constraints can occur among children and family members (Steele & Davies, 2006). The personal growth associated with the experience of caring for the sick child and the development of the family as a whole have been pointed out as a result of the experience of these situations (Steele & Davies, 2006). Likewise, indicators has been reported to corroborate that a considerable majority of children, even after facing severe or chronic adversity, demonstrates some resilience processes (Masten, 2014). It also seems important to understand whether the resilience of the sick child will be in any way related and / or dependent on the resilience of the remaining subsystems of the family. As familiar and contextual variables, family cohesion, effective family communication, and the maintenance of trusting and positive relationships among family members contribute significantly to a greater capacity to deal with challenging situations (Giallo & Gavidia-Payne, 2006; Rosenberg et al., 2013). Intergenerational family solidarity may contribute to the strengthening of protective factors. So, this study includes measures to evaluate this dimension, specifically the Portuguese version of Monteiro (2010) Intergenerational Solidarity Scale (Bengtson & Roberts, 1991). Thus, with our study, we intend to: identify and analyze the relationship between risk and protection factors and their contribution to the positive adaptation to the experience experienced by the family of children with complex chronic disease; to evaluate the mechanisms and psychological processes implemented by family elements that are precursors of family resilience; to test the impact and efficiency of interventions on indicators of family resilience and their variations according to family characteristics and intervention; and, to answer the gaps found in terms of psychological intervention in paediatric palliative context, expecting to develop an intervention model with an emphasis on family resilience that may contribute to the increase of public policies related to the promotion of welfare. The research plan includes four distinct studies: the first, with an exploratory nature, the second and third with a confirmatory nature, and the fourth with the purpose of evaluating the quality of interventions from the participants’ point of view. The training school in which I participated in Keele was important for the purposeful construction of this project as it allowed me to deepen knowledge in this area, but also to realize how important intergenerational family solidarity can be to guarantee the family’s quality of life.

Download slides in pdf: Silver Universe of Intergenerational Solidarity

Abstract: This is a presentation of a multi-disciplinary volume authored by some members of the INTERFASOL and other scholars and key stakeholders, entitled Silver Universe: Views on Active Living, to be published by the Lexington Books. Why ‘silver universe’? Speaking about aging may seem somewhat negative, but more importantly, it can be insufficient for our purposes, as we are attempting at an exploration of diverse spheres of life. The multidisciplinary approach that we are promoting truly speaks into the universe of meanings, not an isolated human being or problem, but the complex context that surrounds every single one of us. As years go by, at some point our universe becomes silver, just as our hair turns gray. While for years we had heard discussions of active aging, the latest trend is to emphasize that we should promote active and healthy attitude throughout the lifespan. We believe that active living is not only about exercise, but even more so about a healthy diet and prevention. The hope is that every human being flourishes, feeling fulfilled in terms of growth in his or her personal maturity, relationships, professional standing, artistic stimulation, and spiritual capacity. This volume reflects the multi-disciplinary and multicultural diversity of contributions. Intergenerational solidarity constitutes a common thread that nineteen authors from five different countries discuss from the point of view of their respective disciplines. From psychology (both clinical and social), through neurology, neuro-genetics, gerontology, nutrition, through sociology, economics, communication, law, tourism and education to theology, we offer complimentary views as a fruit of INTERFASOL, the COST Action that has allowed us to establish these synergies.

Download slides in pdf: Motivations for Agreement with Parental Values: A Key for Understanding Intergenerational Transmission of Values

Abstract: The bulk of studies on intergenerational transmission of values focused on what values parents want to transmit to their children and on the extent to which parents and children are similar in their value priorities. On the contrary, little is known about why children accept their parents’ values. Do children accept their parents’ values under external or internal pressures (i.e., controlled motivations) or because they consider these values as inherently worthy (i.e., autonomous motivations)? Do these motivations affect intergenerational relationships and value transmission?

This study aims at answering these questions across two generations. We examined adolescents’ motivations for agreement with their parents’ values as well as their parents’ motivations for agreement with their own old parents. Moreover, we analyzed the relations between parents’ motivations to agree with their old parents, the values they would like to transmit to their adolescent children, parent-child relationship quality, and the degree of parent-child value congruence. Participants were 325 families (adolescent and both her/his parents, for a total of 975 subjects) living in the North of Italy. Adolescents (girls: 60%) were high-school students aged from 14 to 18 years (M=15.19, SD=1.17). Mean ages of fathers and mothers were 48.29 (SD=5.56) and 44.98 (SD=4.66), respectively. Participants filled out a self-report questionnaire including the Motivations for Agreement with Parental Values Scale (Knafo & Assor, 2007), the Portrait Values Questionnaire (Schwartz, 2003), and the Parental Self-Efficacy Scale (Caprara et al., 2001). Data analysis is still in progress and results will be discussed in relation to intergenerational transmission processes.

Download slides in pdf:  Why do Value Transmission Between Generations on the Concept of Intergenerational Solidarity Matter for School Education?

Abstract: Intergenerational Value Transmission (IVT) is a reciprocal rather than a linear process, in which all the involved negotiate values to discard or maintain. When the definition of value is taken as “an enduring belief that a specific mode of conduct or end state of existence is personally or socially preferable to an opposite or converse mode of conduct or end state of existence” (Rokeach, 1973), what beliefs endure and how become critical questions especially in rapidly changing societies where the process is less continuous and diffuse. Turkey has presented a case for rapid social change over last few decades. In this presentation, we focus on value transmission concerning education between the generations since education and schooling have acquired new and conflicting meanings for different generations. With our nationally funded project (TUBITAK, Project 116K245), we aim to explore whether there is a theoretical relationship between the three latent variables: intergenerational solidarity, the degree of metacognitive awareness of the transference of positive values regarding intergenerational solidarity, and the nature (positive or negative) of attitudes towards education. In the study, 900 students from 7 schools in different parts of Istanbul, 75 2nd and 3rd generation family members, and 30 teachers are targeted to collect data from. In this symposium, we present our study design and preliminary findings in relation to the literature from Turkey.  


Download slides in pdf: Positive and negative life events and well-being across age groups


The aim of this study was to explore age differences in the frequency of positive and negative events, and its associations with well-being.

Data were collected from the first wave of a longitudinal research project on well-being and life events in Croatia (CRO-WELL project). The sample of adult Internet users was divided in three age groups: younger (N=2115, age 18-30 years), middle-aged (N=2517, age 31-54 years) and older (N=387, age 55-85 years) adults. Participants self-reported Life satisfaction, Scale of Positive and Negative Experience, and the frequency of 8 positive and 7 negative events occurring during the previous year.

Younger adults reported more positive events than the other two groups, while no differences were found in the frequency of negative events. More positive and less negative events were significant predictors of better life satisfaction for younger and middle-aged, but not for older adults. More positive and less negative events were predictors of higher positive affect among all three age groups. Less positive and more negative events were predictors of higher negative affect for younger and middle-aged, but for older adults only negative events were associated with higher negative affect. These associations remained after controlling for gender, marital status, income, and education level in analyses.

Age effects on covariations between life events and cognitive and affective well-being are explained within socioemotional selectivity theory and older people’s better regulation of their emotional experience.

Download slides in pdf: Urban Encounters with Strangers – the ICT and Young People’s Experiences of Adult Social Control in Public Places in Helsinki

Abstract: In this presentation I analyze intergenerational encounters and adult social control in public places in Helsinki. I draw on existing work suggesting that complexities of new communication technologies, mobility, and changing social roles are prerequisites for understanding young people’s contemporary everyday life in the city. In my research, I ask, how do young people take part in and negotiate Helsinki’s urban social order in an era which can be referenced as the media city, characterized by digitalization and mediatization? I discuss these features from the point of view of social control which i understand as an interactional force and strategy to produce social and moral order. Furthermore, social control is seen not only in its negative sense of restrictions and sanctions, but also in positive sense of enabling and negotiating social order. Social control as thoroughly interwoven and negotiated in intergenerational encounters, having both formal and informal features and involving technological mediation. I use the example of the Helsinki metro which is a highly technologized system with concentration of mechanical and digital machines in the closed space of stations and train cars. Hence, unlike in busses and trams, some omnipresent tensions and emotions concerning social control become more evident in metro. Many young people experience their presence in the metro as challenged by adults: they tell about experiences of harassment and their strategies for negotiating the order. They use portable devices (smartphones, headphones) not only for entertainment and communication, but also for protection, securing privacy, claiming and protecting their own space. Intergenerational interactions are characterized by young people’s expectations for safety on one hand, and confusion concerning their position, on the other: older generations demand that they be like adults, yet treat them like children without rights.

Download slides in pdf: Inequality and intergenerational support in Europe

Abstract: In times of rapid demographic change and population ageing, rising inequalities in healthy ageing and support for frail older people are of major societal concern and put families as well as states under pressure. This talk will focus on contextual influences on (inequalities in) support from a European perspective in order to find out if and how such developments can be modified by social policies. It will consider the links between informal (family) support and formal (state) support, gender inequalities in support within different care regimes, and the relation between transfers in a three-generational setting and social inequality on the individual and regional level based on the Survey of Health, Ageing and Retirement in Europe.

Download slides in pdf: Towards a Modelling of the Practices of Intergenerational Family Solidarities in Contexts of Single Parenting the Benefits of a STSM at Cnav in Paris

Abstract: Today, in Belgium, the status of single-parent families is the most important alongside nuclear families. More than 20% of all households with children are single-parent families. At the same time, a reflection of a new sharing of responsibilities and resources in dealing with the needs of individuals is emerging at the political level. Indeed, the worsening of economic difficulties has imposed the idea of ​​a “natural” complementarity between solidarities developed by the public sphere and family solidarities. Thus, given the lack of explanation of the functioning of single-parent families and the development of family solidarity practices, we try to understand this phenomenon through this thesis work. The principal objective of the research is therefore to analyze family solidarity practices implemented within single-parent families. The study focuses on the role of the family network in the functioning of models taking into account the intergenerational dimension. The qualitative approach is based on the grounded theory to produce a theory from the empirical material. Indeed, anchoring consists in referring to what the actors live and reproducing faithfully. We collect data through the use of single parent interview. The sampling does not focus on a population composed of individuals. We start from our questions and sample the phenomenon under study. Through the collection, it is the theoretical conceptualization that is sampled. It is a question of discovering all the characteristics of the phenomenon under study as well as all the articulations attested in order to propose an integrated schematization. This analysis shows that single-parent families develop different ways of working according to several factors: history, context, origin, socio-economic level, and so on. More specifically, the single-parent goes through phases (isolation, adaptation, reconstruction) that evolve in different ways depending on the type of solidarity developed. Thus, the single-parent stays on a continuum from the process of solidarity to a separation and, in a manner that evolves according to the phases through which it passes.

Within the framework of the COST project, I had the opportunity to realize a scientific mission in the Research Unit on Aging (URV) of Cnav in Paris (France) for one week in March 2016. Jim OGG, person in charge of the unit welcomed me. This scientific mission allowed me to discuss the concepts of “solidarity”, “family”, “intergenerational” in order to adopt my own definitions and clarify the theoretical framework of the thesis. In addition, I benefited from the expertise of Mr. Ogg and his team, using a quantitative approach to broaden my questions and scientific reflections.

Download slides in pdf:


INTERFASOL Final Conference, 18-20 April 2018. Programme.

INTERFASOL Final Conference

Event date: Wednesday April 18 2018 10:00 – Friday, 20 April 2018, 14:45
Place: University of Luxembourg, Belval Campus, Maison du Savoir, MSA 3.520
2, avenue de l’Université
4365 Esch-sur-Alzette

From April 19th to 20th 2018, the final conference of the EU funded research network INTERFASOL (ISCH COST Action IS1311) will take place at the University of Luxembourg (Campus Belval).This conference offers a platform for exchange and discussion on intergenerational solidarity in Europe from different perspectives. It will bring together international researchers on family relationships and intergenerational solidarity from various disciplines who will present their work in four symposia:

  • Intergenerational Family Solidarity, Well-Being & Health
  • Nurturing Intergenerational Solidarity & Intergenerational Projects
  • Intergenerational Family Solidarity and Migration
  • Intergenerational Value Transmission & Societal Change

Continue reading INTERFASOL Final Conference, 18-20 April 2018. Programme.