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Introduction This chapter and the following two are intended to use the supply approach discussed in Chapter 1 to explore the significance of the key elements of the life-mix framework in four policy domains – namely, childcare leave measures, ECEC, pensions and ALMPs. These policy domains could have direct effects on how women organise their working and caring lives. Measures in these policy domains in seven East Asian and non-East Asian countries and territories (namely, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Hungary, South Korea, Sweden and the UK) are examined

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153 NINE Canadian eCeC labour shortages: big, costly and solvable Robert Fairholm and Jerome Davis introduction Canada’s early childhood education and care (ECEC) sector is primarily under the jurisdiction of the provinces and territories. Each jurisdiction has its own distinct set of regulations, programmes and policies. These differences result in a diverse mix of employment settings, training requirements and availability of regulated childcare places. Despite the myriad of approaches there are a number of striking similarities in the ECEC labour market

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Introduction Childcare arrangements are not solely about practical matters; they also raise moral questions. However, staying at home or using childcare are not necessarily a free choice instead; parents’ childcare arrangements will vary depending on their needs and the range of options available to them ( Peyton et al, 2001 ). Childcare arrangements, including both formal (for example, institutional early childhood education and care [ECEC]) and informal (parental or non-parental) childcare settings, can be viewed as links in the chain of childcare (see

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Providing quality early education and care for disadvantaged children

Early education and care has become a central policy area in many countries. As services expand rapidly, it is crucial to examine whether children from disadvantaged backgrounds receive provision of the highest possible quality.

In this original, topical book, leading experts from eight countries examine how early education and care is organised, funded and regulated in their countries. Bringing together recent statistical evidence, the book gives an up-to-date picture of access to services by different groups, providing rich insights on how policies play out in practice, and the extent to which they help or hinder disadvantaged children to receive high quality provision.

An equal start? reveals the common tensions and complexities countries face in ensuring that early education and care is affordable, accessible and of high quality. Its critical examination of the potential for better policies ensures that An equal start? will be of interest to academic readers as well as policy makers and practitioners.

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An International Comparison of In-Home Childcare Policy and Practice

Once considered the preserve of the wealthy, nanny care has grown in response to changes in the labour market, including the rising number of working mothers with young children and increases in non-standard work patterns.

This book presents new empirical research about in-home childcare in Australia, the United Kingdom and Canada, three countries where governments are pursuing new ways to support in-home childcare through funding, regulation and migration.

The compelling policy story that emerges illustrates the implications of different mechanisms for facilitating in-home childcare - for families and for care workers.

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Can they deliver an equitable service?
Editors: and

The viability, quality and sustainability of publicly supported early childhood education and care services is a lively issue in many countries, especially since the rights of the child imply equal access to provision for all young children. But equitable provision within childcare markets is highly problematic, as parents pay for what they can afford and parental income inequalities persist or widen.

This highly topical book presents recent, significant research from eight nations where childcare markets are the norm. It also includes research about ‘raw’ and ‘emerging’ childcare markets operating with a minimum of government intervention, mostly in low income countries or post transition economies. Childcare markets compares these childcare marketisation and regulatory processes across the political and economic systems in which they are embedded. Contributions from economists, childcare policy specialists and educationalists address the question of what constraints need to be in place if childcare markets are to deliver an equitable service.

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Developing the new framework of ‘life-mix’, which considers the mixed patterns of caring and working in different periods of life, this book systematically explores the interplay of productivism, women, care and work in East Asia and Europe.

The book ranges across four key aspects of welfare – childcare, parental leave, employment support and pensions – to illustrate how policies affect women in various periods of their lives. Policy case studies from France, Germany, Hong Kong, Hungary, South Korea, Sweden and the UK, show how welfare could support people’s caring and working lives. This book forms a prescient examination of how productivist thinking underpins regimes and impacts women’s welfare, care and work in both the East and West.

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Strategic Lessons from Europe

Introduction and conclusion available Open Access under CC-BY-NC licence.

The turn towards a Social Investment approach to welfare implies deploying resources to enhance human capital and mobilise the productive potential of citizens, starting in early childhood.

This edited collection brings regional and local realities to the forefront of social investment debates by showcasing successes, challenges and setbacks of Social Investment policies and services from ten European countries: Italy, UK, Sweden, Finland, Greece, Germany, Poland, the Netherlands, Hungary, and Spain. It provides practical, accessible illustrations of good practice, routes to success, and lessons learned. The book is informed throughout by engagement with service users and local communities, and features many previously unheard voices including front-line workers, local decision makers, volunteers and beneficiaries.

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Care Work, Gender Equality and Welfare State Sustainability

In this insightful collection, academic experts consider the impact of neoliberal policies and ideology on the status of care work in Nordic countries. With new research perspectives and empirical analyses, it assesses challenges for care work including technologies, management and policy-making.

Arguing that there is a care crisis even in the supposedly feminist Nordic ‘nirvana’, this book explores understandings of the care crisis, the serious consequences for gender equality and the hitherto neglected effects on the long-term sustainability of the Nordic welfare states.

This astute take on the Nordic welfare model provides insights into what the Nordic experience can tell us about wider international issues in care.

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Recent international developments, current issues and future directions

This volume brings together contributors from 18 countries to provide international perspectives on the politics of parental leave policies in different parts of the world. Initially looking at the politics of care leave policies in eight countries across Europe, the US, Latin America and Asia, the book moves on to consider a variety of key issues in depth, including gender equality, flexibility and challenges for fathers in using leave. In the final section of the book, contributors look beyond the early parenthood period to consider possible future directions for care leave policy in order to address the wider changes and challenges that our societies face.

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