Politics of defamilialization: A comparison of Italy, Japan, Korea and Spain

Margarita Estévez-Abe, Manuela Naldini

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

41 Scopus citations


This article investigates the politics of ‘defamilialization of care’ in four familialist countries – Italy, Japan, Korea and Spain – during the past 15 years. By ‘defamilialization of care’, we refer to those public policies, which aim at reducing the care responsibility of the family – both for the young and the old. We build upon the existing literature on new social risks by highlighting the role of those macro-political institutions such as electoral systems and government types in order to demonstrate that there are two very different types of politics of defamilialization: (1) election-oriented and (2) problem-oriented. We attribute different policy outcomes in the four familialist countries to their specific institutional configurations rather than to partisan government composition or different cultural orientations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)327-343
Number of pages17
JournalJournal of European Social Policy
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 1 2016


  • Childcare
  • Italy
  • Japan
  • Korea
  • Spain
  • elderly care
  • familialism
  • gender
  • new social risks
  • welfare

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Social Sciences
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law


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