Expectations vs. Actuality in the Levels of Support from Children: Tracing Cohorts in Taiwan from 1965 to 1999

Albert Hermalin, University of Michigan
Li-Shou Yang, University of Michigan

How well do young couples read the social and demographic changes going on about them and to what extent do they modify their expectations as they advance through the life cycle? This study traces expectations of several cohorts of women for coresiding with children in old age and being supported by them by employing a long time series of questions included in fertility surveys in Taiwan from 1965 to the 1990s; and then contrasting these expectations with actual support patterns revealed in surveys of the older population. The trends in the expectation data are examined by characteristics and estimates of inter- vs. intra-cohort change provided. Expectations appear to evolve with changing life cycle developments and period events, so that the trends in expected support are far from linear.

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Presented in Session 38: Expectations and Social Relationships