[Forum Regensburg] Mikołaj Szołtysek (Halle/Saale):,Historical family and European contemporary developmental inequalities: is there a long-term effect?'

20.11.2017 (14:15 - 15:45)

Am 20. November heißt die Graduiertenschule für Ost- und Südosteuropastudien Dr. Mikołaj Szołtysek (Halle/Saale) in Regensburg willkommen. Er wird in der Reihe "Forum" einen Vortrag mit dem Titel "Historical family and European contemporary developmental inequalities: is there a long-term effect?" halten.

Der Historiker Dr. habil. Mikołaj Szołtysek ist vom 2. bis 30. November 2017 Fellow der Graduiertenschule  in Regensburg. Szołtysek war von 2014 bis 2017 Senior Research Fellow am Max Planck Institut für ethnologische Forschung in Halle an der Saale und zuvor stellvertretender Leiter der Arbeitsgruppe Historische Demographie am Max Planck Institut für demographische Forschung in Rostock. Mit Mosaic hat Szołtysek eines der größten Dateninfrastrukturprojekte im Bereich der historischen Demographie mitgegründet.



Mikołaj Szołtysek
Max Planck Institute for Social Anthropology, Halle/Saale
Mosaic Project, www.censusmosaic.org
-          in collaboration with R. Poniat (Białystok, Poland) & S. Gruber (Graz, Austria)

Historical family and European contemporary developmental inequalities:
is there a long-term effect?

                                                                                  Family systems are neither good nor bad,                                                                                                 but they are not neutral either. They do                                                                                                     much to characterize the societies that                                                                                                      possess them
(D. Reher, 1998)

Despite ample evidence showing that cultures of the world are getting more and more interconnected and that the business world is becoming increasingly global, a contrary can be shown to be true as well: as the cumulative cross-cultural research indicates, despite the increasing ‘global’ hatch the world societies continue to preserve specific characteristics, and Europe is not an exception in this regard. Studies of Hofstede, Inglehart, Welzel, and others, have  indicated, that even within such a relatively narrow landmass distinctive cultural regions may exist, and that convergence of values into a ‘single European value landscape’ will most likely be a slow moving process and its ultimate completion uncertain. The ongoing global socioeconomic convergence did not torch all the vestiges of developmental inequalities either. Despite improvement in the general human condition nearly everywhere on the continent over the past twenty years, scholars and policy-makers continue to reveal a clear north-west/south-east divide when it come to the overall human development within the EU, and even more pervasive contrast once Europe as a whole is considered. The message is clear: while seen from the bird’s eye view European countries may indeed appear as moving on parallel general trajectories, these trajectories are sufficiently quantitatively and qualitatively different.

            What are the main potential determinants of such variations? What shapes those parallel though not overlapping trajectories? Building on the now burgeoning literature on the deep historic roots of developmental gradients, this paper tests the proposition that the broad cultural heritage of a society with regards to family values and behaviour may leave an imprint on various contemporary societal outcomes. I use the largest micro-database on historical family patterns from Mosaic and North Atlantic Population projects to develop a multidimensional measure of family organization (the Patriarchy Index) for 300 regions of Europe from Iceland to the Urals, from 1700 to 1918. Then, through a bottom-up aggregation I derive historical patriarchy scores for 25 contemporary European countries and link them to a number of global indicators of gender inequality, value orientation, economic growth and human development from World Values Surveys, United Nations Development Program and World Economic Forum. Using cross-country correlations and OLS regression models with controls, I show that countries that once had elevated patriarchy levels in the past generally tended to develop into hierarchical societies with gender inequalities, more collectivist mindset and less individualist culture, and weaker indicators of long-term economic growth. While avoiding explicit causal language in the interpretation of the results, I engage with the discussion of whether informal institutions such as family and household could indeed represent potential key intermediate channels through which historical cultural profile and current development may interact.


Die Veranstaltung richtet sich sowohl an Hochschulangehörige als auch an die interessierte Öffentlichkeit.

Zeit: Montag, 20.11.2017, 14-16 Uhr c.t.

Ort: Regensburg, GS OSES, Landshuter Str. 4, Raum 017 (EG)