Are being responsible, having a stable job, and caring for the family important for adulthood? Examining the importance of different criteria for adulthood in Italian emerging adults.

Semira Tagliabue, E Crocetti

Risultato della ricerca: Contributo in libroChapter

Abstract

In recent decades, a progressive deferral of transition to adulthood has occurred around the world. In Italy, such a postponement is particularly pronounced, leading to the conceptualization of the Italian “delay syndrome” as characterized by five features: prolongation of education; deferral of entry into the job market and high rates of unemployment; tendency to remain in the parental home until the late 20s or 30s; delayed entry into committed partnership; and delayed transition to parenthood. In this chapter, after introducing specific features of the Italian context, we presented an original study aimed at unravelling how Italian youth conceptualize transition to adulthood. In line with extant literature, we examined the importance that young people assigned to a set of criteria for adulthood that can be grouped into various categories: independence, interdependence, role transitions, norm compliance, chronological transitions, and family capacities. Second, we examined which factors affected the importance assigned to each set of criteria. Participants were 1,513 Italian emerging adults (46.40% males; 46.67% workers) from 19 to 30 years. Findings indicated that in the “top ten” of criteria ranked as most important by Italian emerging adults there was a complex combination of criteria related to family capacities, accepting responsibilities for the consequences of personal actions, settling into a long-term career, and norm compliance. Thus, the conceptualization of transition to adulthood was organized around a multiple set of criteria. The factors taken into account (i.e., gender, age, living arrangement, family structure, romantic status, and occupational status) explained significant but small portions of variance in the importance assigned to each criterion, suggesting that the relevance assigned to criteria for adulthood was largely shared by Italian emerging adults. Findings of this study are interpreted in light of similarities and differences with studies conducted in other cultures and future lines of research are suggested.
Lingua originaleEnglish
Titolo della pubblicazione ospiteEmerging adulthood in an European context
EditorR Zukauskiene
Pagine33-53
Numero di pagine21
Stato di pubblicazionePubblicato - 2016

Keywords

  • Criteria for adulthood
  • EMERGING ADULTHOOD

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