November 30, 2023

Athens News

News in English from Greece

Study: what family means to Greeks

Financial reasons (48.70%) and job insecurity (12.10%) are the main reasons why Greeks today experience difficulties and/or refuse to start a family.

This follows from a study conducted by the National Center for Social Research commissioned by Hydrogei Insurance, according to which, even in today’s era of social transformation the family remains a stable and universal value.

Introducing the study, Scientific Director Ioanna Ciganu, Research Director of EKKE (Εθνικό Κέντρο Κοινωνικών Ερευνών), stated that the alleged the liberalization of morality, although associated with the evolution of views, left intact in the collective consciousness the institution of the family, which, apparently, is of exceptional importance for modern Greek society.

The expert added that the respondents of the sample attach importance to the institution of the family in the first place, “as the acquisition of love” and secondly, as procreation, companionship and happiness.

Ms. Ciganu draws the appropriate conclusion that in the modern era of uncertainty, emotional balancesbut not reproductive debt. In addition, she stated that in the Greek social formation, the family is a universal undeniable value that dominates the landscape of the hierarchy of values.

The research director of the study notes that the instability and fatigue seen in the institution of marriage today does not seem to have affected it much, as people still want to “get married and start families.” According to the expert, instability/tension and fatigue in marriage arise due to economic and professional parameters, and not the very institution of family and marriage.

According to the analysis of the first results of the study:

  • Greeks still, for the most part, consider the family to be very important. In particular, in 96% of the answers, the respondents state that the family is very, very important for them (24% and 72% of the answers, respectively).
  • In the question “who do you consider your family today”, the participants answered mainly: parents (81.8% of answers), partner (76.9%) and children (73%). However, grandparents (55.6%) and other relatives (41.9%) also occupy an important position, indicating the important role of the extended family. It is also noteworthy that pets are now considered family members, at least 1/3 of the people who took part in the survey.
  • The main reason why it is difficult for people to have a family and children is financial difficulties (49% of answers) and the closely related reason for the lack of job security (12.10%). At the same time, women and young people were more likely to give such answers.
  • 64% of respondents believe that remote work allows very (41.8%) or extremely (22.2%) to combine work and family life.
  • Lack of communication, infidelity, selfishness and domestic violence are the most common answers to the question “why do you think couples are getting divorced today.”
  • The overwhelming percentage of responses (93.3% in total) captures the positive characteristics of the family, such as “loving hugs” (59.2%) and “refuge in difficult times” (34.12%).
  • However, the picture is not always rosy, as there is also an interpretation of the concept of “family” as a source of “danger / being in captivity.” 85% of respondents believe that domestic violence is very common.

Commenting on the results of the study, Thodoris Georgakopoulos noted that although the institution of family and marriage in any form is still universally recognized, this does not affect the birth rate, which in our country is below 1.4. At the same time, for example, In Sweden, the corresponding figure is over 1.8 and half of the children are born out of wedlock.

Also, Mr. Georgakopoulos added that in our country there can be no question of “cultural” demography, since couples tend to want to get married and have children, but end up not doing what they wanted. At this point, he cited demographic countries such as France and Sweden as examples, which have the highest birth rates in the developed world and have policies to support professional careers for parents, especially women, and promote equality in the workplace.

Finally, it was noted that society in Greece, which as a country is in the last places in all indicators, still has a family as a basis and is a source of resilience to a series of crises in recent years.

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