The determinants of paternal and maternal involvement in childcare

Mariana Pinho, Ruth Gaunt

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


This study tests the hypotheses derived from three theoretical approaches to the determinants of parents' involvement in childcare: economic and structural models, gender ideologies, and family systems theory. Two hundred and thirty-seven Israeli couples with three 40-monthold infants completed self-report questionnaires that measured the father's and the mother's socio-demographic and employment characteristics, gender ideologies, relationship quality and various forms of involvement in childcare. The findings provided evidence for a structural model, showing that fathers' childcare hours were negatively related to the degree of overlap between the parents' work hours. Partial support was also found for the gender ideology model, as the mother's gender attitudes correlated with her hours of care and the distribution of childcare tasks. Weak support was found for the family systems theory. The findings highlight the importance of distinguishing different forms of involvement in childcare as each is affected by a different set of determinants.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationParental Involvement
Subtitle of host publicationPractices, Improvement Strategies and Challenges
PublisherNova Science Publishers, Inc.
Number of pages27
ISBN (Electronic)9781536168808
ISBN (Print)9781536168280
StatePublished - 8 Jan 2020
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 by Nova Science Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved.


  • Childcare
  • Economic
  • Family systems theory
  • Gender ideologies
  • Parental involvement
  • Structural models


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