Crowding In or Out? National Public Pension, Inter-generational Contract, and Family Support for Empty-Nest Elderly in Rural China (76667)

Session Information: Aging and Gerontology
Session Chair: Yinkai Zhang

Thursday, 28 March 2024 10:05
Session: Session 1
Room: Room 608
Presentation Type: Oral Presentation

All presentation times are UTC + 9 (Asia/Tokyo)

Although efforts from state and family are deemed both necessary in building a support system for the ageing population, how national welfare programs such as public pensions would affect family support is often under debate. In rural China, where family support systems are traditionally favored for the elderly, the introduction of public pensions has stimulated similar discussions. Despite the findings in previous studies appears inconclusive of public pensions’ crowding-in and crowding-out effects on family support, the explanatory mechanisms of such effects also remain unclear. This study investigates the impact of the New Rural Social Pension Scheme (NRSPI) on family support for empty-nest elderly in rural China through the lenses of inter-generational contract and intimacy. Utilizing panel data from the CLASS 2016 and 2018 surveys, we find the pension receipt encourages bidirectional financial transfers and intimate relationships between generations, thus crowding in children’s financial and care support to their empty-nest parents. However, receiving pensions may also discourage parental care support to children and partially crowd out children’s financial and care support. Despite this, the crowding-out effect is relatively minor and cannot counteract the crowding-in effects from other pathways. Our findings indicate that national welfare such as pensions can encourage family support through inter-generational contracts and intimacy. During this process, older parents may adapt their exchange strategies by replacing time-consuming care support with downward financial transfer. The policy recommendations for Chinese pension reform and contributions to the debate between national welfare and family support are also discussed.

Chuanqi Que, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong

About the Presenter(s)
Mr Chuanqi Que is a University Doctoral Student at The Chinese University of Hong Kong in Hong Kong

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Posted by Clive Staples Lewis

Last updated: 2023-02-23 23:45:00