Abstracts & Papers in Stream 4

In the face of an ageing era, many East Asian countries are confronted by the increasing demand of social care for the elderly and young children. Social care thus has become an integral component of the welfare states conceptualization. However, the discussion about care is complicated by the multi‐dimensional nature of the concept: 1) care is gendered labor; 2) the arrangement of care suggests a mixed economy that involves the family, state, market, and community; 3) care needs to be understood under an ethical/normative framework, characterized by responsibilities and obligations; 4) care concerns with simultaneously the physical and psychological well‐being of both the care‐givers and care‐receivers. The complexity of care renders the conventional welfare states analyses inadequate, and calls for a renewed analytic framework. This paper responds to the key issues of social care in the context of welfare states.
The paper sets out in the first section to bridge the welfare states conceptualizations and the literature on social care, indicating a shift toward the inclusion of social care in the analyses. It proceeds to engage in the "justice‐care" conversation that points to the ethical foundations of welfare states. Drawing on feminist traditions, the ethic of care challenges the paradigm of care provision in welfare states, and in collaboration with the ethic of justice, proposes "care regimes" that promote gender equality and insinuate care into social rights. The second half of the paper examines the elder care issues in the context of mainland China in light of the care regime conceptualization. The analysis exemplifies that the ethic of care and care regime can offer a renewed framework for understanding welfare states. This framework is particularly helpful in the developing contexts, where the conventional welfare states analyses that root in the history of western developed countries sometimes find their applications difficult.

Recent years have seen a range of studies emerging to reflect on growth and development in later period of life despite increased experience of the "new risks," the risks that were not seriously considered in the past. These include limited familial support due to non-existence of extended families, rising proportion of dual-income families, increased number of disruptive family events such as an adult child's addiction, incarceration, or death (Goodman, 2003; Waldrop & Weber, 2001), and lengthened life expectancy.

This study is particularly interested in the well-beings of grandparents who provide child care to their grandchildren and describes how the grandparents' life satisfaction levels differ according to their age groups. The circumstances faced by grandparents who voluntarily or involuntarily become caregivers for their grandchildren are complex. Since successful feelings of well-being in old age are considered to be important (Neuhaus & Neuhaus, 1982) in this rapidly growing aging society, we are determined to investigate the potential strain as well as personal growth and enrichment of this vulnerable population in rearing grandchildren.

Previous studies were either studies based on small non-representative samples (Jendrek, 1993; Kelch-Oliver, 2011; Waldrop & Weber, 2001) or focused on a specific diagnosis as an outcome of care experience (Minkler, et al., 1997). The analyses of this study rely on panel data from the Korean Longitudinal Study of Ageing (KLoSA), Waves 1 and 2 that were collected in 2006 and 2008. The survey was conducted in households with respondents who were 45-year-old and older in Korea. Life satisfaction was measured using a combination of subjective life satisfaction questions in regards to relationships, economic status, leisure, and health. Multiple regression analysis is used to identify the effects of child care responsibility on grandparents' psychological well-being and life satisfaction between age groups.

It is an undeniable fact that well-being of the new generation for the 21st century has experienced significant changes and the children are living in increasingly diverse society nowadays. More specifically, Chinese families put more emphasis on market-oriented development and free competition in transitional China. Given China's one-child policy, parents try their best to let their children attend learning and social activities so as to be well-equipped for children's future development. The opportunity cost of the competition oriented programs is that children have less time to play together and learn appropriate social skills that will accurate social capital but it takes time and effort to accumulate. Previous studies highlighted variation of social capital accrued among child and adolescents in China by their socioeconomic background, household registration status (i.e. hukou status), and gender; and its impacts on their future development. However, there is little knowledge of social capital building among primary children with different socioeconomic and demographic characteristics in transitional China. This paper uses the concept of social capital to frame the analysis of (i) the extent to which variations in family and school social capital can be explained by child's differing socioeconomic and demographic background and school characteristics; and (ii) the extent to which family and school social capital in combination may be associated with variations in child subjective well-being in Shenzhen, where stands in the forefront of economic development in Guangdong province, China and its experiences learnt may inform the rest of the country. Survey data with a random sample of 1,306 sixth grade primary school children and their parents was collected from the Nanshan district in Shenzhen. The results suggested that gender, the only-child status at home and hukou status had impacts on family and school social capital accrued among primary school children in Shenzhen. There were also links between child's perception of connectedness to their parents, peers, and teachers, and their positive child subjective well-being.
The magnitude of 15 million domestic care workers in China today has attracted great attention from the government, researchers and other social actors. However, existing researches mainly focus on the different types of relationship between domestic care workers and employers as a unity. Few of them have noticed the gender difference between male employer and female employer in the families. This research is to fill this gap by exploring the different interactions between domestic care workers and male employers and female employers. The interaction is framed into a 'Domestic care work triangle' theoretical model. Four aspects of interaction including interaction depth, frequency, content, length are analyzed in each pair of the interaction. The research has adopted a qualitative method and collected in-depth interview data from 30 domestic care workers who are working in families with employers having various social-economic backgrounds in Beijing. The findings suggest that the interactions between domestic care workers and male employer and female employer are quite different in each of the four analytical aspects. The paper finds that though female employers are free from dirty house work including washing and cooking etc, they are still involved in other domestic work to beautify themselves to be a good wife and good mother. The nature of domestic work in this research is then reconceptualized to include both 'dirty' house work and 'beautifying' work. The research also finds that kids in the families are buffers to alleviate the conflicts between domestic care workers and employers. The research has gender implications as it finds that the ignorance of male and female employers has blurred the gender inequality in domestic work field. The research is also expected to contribute to the area of social policy on family issues.