Intergenerational Solidarity in Two Rural Thai Villages

  • Hirofumi Ando College of Local Administration, Khon Kaen University
  • Peerasit Kamnuansilpa College of Local Administration, Khon Kaen University
  • Rikiya Matsukura Department of Economics, Nihon University
  • Supawatanakorn Wongthanavasu College of Local Administration, Khon Kaen University
Keywords: intergenerational solidarity, aging, Thailand, Khon Kaen, intergenerational relationships

Abstract

The population of Thailand has been rapidly aging for several decades. A number of studies have examined critical issues related to the welfare of older adults. This longitudinal study revisits some of those issues, using data collected primarily from interviews with women drawn from households in two villages in the northeastern province of Khon Kaen from 2002 to 2005. In addition, the study conducted focus group discussions and in-depth interviews of headmen of the two villages in the years 2006 and 2009.

As it is commonly assumed that the transition to an aging society undermines intergenerational solidarity, we attempt to unravel this issue at the micro level by looking at the situation in these two villages. The findings indicate that the family is still the primary social institution and continues to be the key social safety net for older people in these villages. Intergenerational support remains intact and is relatively unchanged. Property and other assets are passed from parent to child. While fewer children provide monetary support to their parents, there is evidence that the amount of assistance given to parents has increased. Based on the results of this study, we recommend that Thailand gives greater priority to intergenerational solidarity by formulating new supportive policies. These would include moving away from the welfare model toward greater engagement between parents and adult children by strengthening the activities that maintain or promote intergenerational solidarity.

Downloads

Download data is not yet available.

References

Alam, M. (2010). Is caring for elders an act of altruism? In M. Cruz-Saco & S. Zelenev (Eds.). International solidarity: Strengthening economic and social ties (pp. 171-187). New York: Palgrave Macmillan.

Caffrey, R. E. (1992). Family care of the elderly in northeast Thailand: Changing patterns. Journal of Cross-Cultural Gerontology, 7 (2), 105-116. http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/bf00115939

Chamratrithirong, A. (1984). Loosely-structured Thailand: The evidences from marriage culture. Bangkok: Institute for Population and Social Research.

Fernquest, J. (2012, January 21). Raw fish & cancer in Thailand. Bangkok Post. Retrieved from http://www.bangkokpost.com/learning/learning-from-news/276051/raw-fish-cancer-inthailand

Hanchingchai, P. & Kamnuansilpa, P. (2014). The relationship between intergenerational solidarity and mthe happiness of the elderly. Local Administration Journal, 7 (2), 1-15.

Jones, G. W. (1993). Consequences of rapid fertility decline for old-aged security. New York: Oxford University Press.

Kamnuansilpa, P. & Wongthanavasu, S. (2014). Intergenerational solidarity: How it works and the policy implication for local government. Khon Kaen, Thailand: College of Local Administration, Khon Kaen University.

Knodel, J. (2014). Is intergenerational solidarity really on the decline? Cautionary evidence from Thailand. Asian Population Studies, 10(2), 176-194. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/17441730.2014.902160

Knodel, J. & Chayovan, N. (1997). Persistence and change in the living arrangements and support of Thai elderly, No. 97-42. Ann Arbor, MI: Population Studies Center, University of Michigan. Retrieved from http://www.psc.isr.umich.edu/pubs/pdf/ea97-42.pdf

Knodel, J. & Chayovan, N. (2008). Population ageing and the well-being of older persons in Thailand, Report 08-659. Ann Arbor, MI: Population Studies Center, University of Michigan. Retrieved from http://www.psc.isr.umich.edu/pubs/pdf/rr08-659.pdf

Knodel, J. & Chayovan, N. (2009). Intergenerational relationships and family care and support for Thai elderly. Ageing International, 33(1-4), 15-27. http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s12126-009-9026-7

Knodel, J., Chayovan, N., Graiurapong, S. & Suraratdecha, C. (1999). Aging in Thailand: An overview of formal and informal support, Report 99-53. Ann Arbor, MI: Population Studies Center, University of Michigan. Retrieved from http://www.psc.isr.umich.edu/pubs/pdf/ea99-53.pdf

Knodel, J., Prachuabmoh, V. & Chayovan, N. (2013). The changing well-being of Thai elderly: An update from the 2011 "Survey of Older Persons in Thailand". Chiang Mai, Thailand: HelpAge International.

Lee, R. & Mason, A. (2006). What is the demographic dividend? Finance and Development, September, 16-17.

Naohiro, Y. (2014, May 20). Clock running down on social security reform. Nippon.com. Retrieved from http://www.nippon.com/en/in-depth/a03003/

National Economic and Social Development Board. (2003). Population projections for Thailand 2010-2040. Bangkok: Office of the National Economic and Social Development Board.

Office of the Education Council. (2012). Thailand statistics and education indicators. Bangkok: Office of the Education Council. Retrieved from http://stated2.onecapps.org/?Lang=1&ID=17&UnderSub=33&Sub=22#

Podhisita, C. (1994). Coresidence and the transition to adulthood in the rural Thai family. In L.-J. Cho & M. Yada (Eds.). Tradition and change in the Asian family (pp. 363-381). Honolulu: East-West Center in cooperation with University Research Center, Nihon University.

Prachuabmoh, V. (2014). Preparations for old age and social participation of present and future older persons in Thailand: Gender differences. In V. L. Bengtson & A. Lowensten (Eds.). Global aging and challenges to families (pp. 99-121). New York: Aldine de Gruyter.

Ritcher, K. & Podhisita, C. (1991). Thai family demography: A review and research prospects. Journal of Population and Social Studies, 3(1-2), 1-19.

Seligman, M. E. (2002). Authentic happiness. New York: Free Press.

Siriboon, S. & Knodel, J. (1994). Thai elderly who do not coreside with their children. Journal of Cross- Cultural Gerontology, 9, 21-38. http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/bf00972063

Tuccille, J. (2014, December 19). Social Security on track to go broke, says CBO. Reason.com. Retrieved from http://reason.com/blog/2014/12/19/social-security-on-track-to-go-broke-say

United Nations. (2007). World population aging. New York: Department of Social and Development Affairs.

United Nations. (2010). World population prospects: The 2010 revision. New York: Department of Social and Development Affairs.

United Nations. (2012). Probabilistic population projections: Based on the 2012 revision of the world population prospects. Retrieved from http://esa.un.org/unpd/ppp/

Wongsith, M. (1994). Attitudes toward family values in rural Thailand. In L.-J. Cho & M. Yada (Eds.). Tradition and change in the Asian family (pp. 401-418). Honolulu: East-West Center in cooperation with University Research Center, Nihon University.

Wongthanavasu, S. & Kamnuansilpa, P. (2004). Sustainability of the Thai family planning: Systems dynamics perspective. Journal of Population and Social Studies, 12(2), 62-82.

World Bank. (2014). Fertility rate, total (births per woman). Retrieved from http://data.worldbank.org/indicator/SP.DYN.TFRT.IN
Published
2015-06-30
How to Cite
Ando, H., Kamnuansilpa, P., Matsukura, R., & Wongthanavasu, S. (2015). Intergenerational Solidarity in Two Rural Thai Villages. Social Science Asia, 1(4), 19-38. Retrieved from https://socialscienceasia.nrct.go.th/index.php/SSAsia/article/view/71
Section
Research Article