Population Research and Policy Review

, Volume 29, Issue 2, pp 249–273 | Cite as

Pattern and Determinants of Paternal Involvement in Childcare: An Empirical Investigation in a Metropolis of India

  • Anjula Saraff
  • Harish C. Srivastava


An analysis of various aspects of paternal involvement among Indian fathers is presented in this article. The pattern of involvement in terms of the activities participated in, and their frequency of participation have been examined. Overall level of involvement of fathers in childcare has also been determined. A number of hypotheses regarding predictors of paternal involvement have been formulated and examined with the use of empirical data. The study is based on interviews conducted with Indian couples (N = 350) having at least one child aged 10 years or younger. To understand the determinants of paternal involvement, regression has been conducted wherein paternal involvement has been regressed with 14 predictors. Results indicate that paternal involvement in childcare is mainly determined by the perception of individuals towards fatherhood—be it gender role expectations, or perception of the peer group, or fathering received by the individual fathers. Other socio-economic factors affecting paternal involvement have also been examined. As the importance of paternal involvement in childcare is increasingly being recognised, these findings have implications for programmers and policy makers. Interventions to bring about a positive change in the attitude of fathers may improve paternal participation.


Father Determinants Paternal involvement Childcare India 


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© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.International Institute for Population SciencesMumbaiIndia
  2. 2.Department of Development StudiesInternational Institute for Population SciencesMumbaiIndia

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