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Becoming parents. A qualitative analysis of fertility choices

GUIDO MAGGIONI
Genus
Vol. 60, No. 1, Italian Low Fertility Between Economic Constraints and Changing Values (January - March 2004), pp. 89-109
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/29788794
Page Count: 21
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Becoming parents. A qualitative analysis of fertility choices
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Abstract

L'approccio qualitativo può fornire nuovi strumenti di conoscenza del comportamento riproduttivo consentendo al ricercatore di focalizzare complessi processi decisionali, come quelli che portano ad una maternità tardiva o alla sterilità volontaria. Sono stati utilizzati nel lavoro quali tecniche di ricerca interviste biografiche e focus group, realizzati nel Comune di Pesaro, che consentono di essere interpretati congiuntamente in un'analisi integrata. La scelta delle coppie di avere figli ha conseguenze negative per una carriera professionale in mobilità ascendente, e talvolta per la stessa possibilità di avere un lavoro. Molte coppie cercano un compromesso, che si materializza nella decisione di ritardare la nascita di un figlio, o di rinunciarvi. Le persone che vorrebbero altri figli richiedono interventi finalizzati a rendere più amichevoli per le famiglie il mercato del lavoro e i rapporti con i servizi sociali. The qualitative approach provides new cognitive tools to integrate and correct interpretations in the study of reproductive behaviour as it allows the researcher to concentrate on complex decisional processes, like those that lead to a late motherhood or voluntary infertility. Both biographical interviews and focus groups, realised in the municipality of Pesaro, were used as research tools, as they offer the possibility of an integrated data analysis. The couples choice to have children has negative consequences upon an upwardly mobile professional life, and at times, on the possibility of working at all. Many couples search for a compromise, which ends up either to "delay or renounce" having a child. Subjects that would like to have more children need interventions aimed at making the labour market and the relationship with the welfare services more family friendly. L'approche qualitative peut fournir au chercheur de nouveaux instruments de connaissance des comportements reproducteurs en lui permettant de privilégier des comportements décisionnels complexes tels que ceux qui favorisent une maternité tardive ou une infécondité volontaire. Les techniques de recherche utilisées dans la municipalité de Pesaro sont les entrevues biographiques et les groupes de discussion (focus group) qui permettent une interprétation conjointe dans une analyse intégrée. Le choix des couples d'avoir des enfants a un impact négatif sur la mobilité professionnelle ascendante et parfois même sur la possibilité de trouver un emploi. Beaucoup de couples cherchent un compromis en retardant ou en excluant la naissance d'un enfant. Les personnes qui désirent plusieurs enfants requièrent des interventions visant à mieux disposer le marché du travail et les services sociaux envers la famille.

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