Other Paper

State-of-the-art report: changes in the life course

Pailhé, A., Mortelmans, D., Castro, T., Cortina Trilla, C., Digoix, M., Festy, P., Krapf, S., Kreyenfeld, M. R., Lyssens-Danneboom, V., Martín-García, T., Rault, W., Thévenon, O., Toulemon, L.
FamiliesAndSocieties working paper series 2014:6
67 pages.
[Europe], [FamiliesAndSocieties project] (2014)


The dynamics of family formation and disruption have changed in contemporary societies. Compared to previous decades, more people cohabit, have children outside marital unions, experience the dissolution of their unions, re-partner, enter stepfamilies, live separately from their children or remain childless. Family life courses have become increasingly diverse as the sequence of events and the pace at which they occur have become less standardized than before. Moreover, new types of households such as single parent families, Living-Apart-Together relationships and same sex couples are emerging. This report contains a comprehensive literature overview of state-of-the-art knowledge about the dynamics of the development of family constellations and non-standard families. It discusses how current research can be further developed to improve our understanding of determinants of changes in family structure. It underlines that future research needs to consider the family as a dynamic entity. Keywords: life course, transition to adulthood, separation, single parent families, step families, Living-Apart-Together relationships, same sex couples, multiple residence
Keywords: adulthood, separation
The Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research (MPIDR) in Rostock is one of the leading demographic research centers in the world. It's part of the Max Planck Society, the internationally renowned German research society.