The digital generation. Representations of a generational digital divide
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This chapter addresses the interplay between the welfare state and intergenerational dependency, focusing on transfers between generations related to housing. In this chapter, dependence refers to how public policy arrangements lead to a reliance between older and younger family members or enable individual autonomy. We use housing to examine how welfare state reforms and changes in housing policy and housing markets have affected intergenerational dependency within the family sphere in recent years. For the analyses, we use Norway as a case and employ data from national representative surveys. Norway represents a Nordic country with a generous welfare state that favours young adults’ residential autonomy. The results partly confirm that public policy arrangements shape intergenerational family relations, but the Norwegian case also reveals a more ambiguous picture than previous studies. We find that despite recent housing policy reforms which restrict mortgage-lending practices and increase in house prices, there is no decline in the likelihood of entering homeownership among young adults. This is not explained by increased parental support, as we find that the share of young adults receiving parental support for housing has been stable over the last two decades. However, the amount of financial support may have changed during the same period.