Report launch will be live-streamed

07 September 2016

The first report from the Centre for Longitudinal Research study Who are today's dads? will be launched in Wellington this Friday 09 September. The event is hosted by Superu within its seminar series and will be livestreamed via Facebook.

Report launch event details.

The launch will be live-streamed on Superu’s Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/SuperuNZ/

If you live-stream, you can ask a question by adding it as a comment on Facebook and if time allows, the MC will ask the speakers on your behalf.

The research draws on responses from the fathers and co-parents of children who are being followed in the University-based longitudinal study Growing Up in New Zealand. It reveals a rich diversity among those who play father and father-figure roles in the lives of contemporary New Zealand children.

“The diversity of ‘dads’ in the study reflects some of the ethnic diversity of 21st century New Zealand and includes a reported 77 different combinations of ethnicity together with a high proportion (more than 30 percent) of ‘migrant dads’ who were born outside New Zealand,” says study principal investigator and Growing Up in New Zealand study director, Associate Professor Susan Morton from the University of Auckland.

“The study shows not only the changing face of today’s dads, but their changing roles in children’s lives,” says Dr Morton.

The research explores the diversity of individuals who are father figures, with a focus on work, parenting, family and how involved fathers and co-parents are with their child.

Study participants include not only biological fathers but also stepfathers, adoptive and foster parents, co-mums, grandparents and other family members.

The study, funded by the Ministry of Business Innovation and Employment, is based on more than 4,000 responses to an online questionnaire sent to fathers and others who fill a ‘dad role’ to the Growing Up in New Zealand children (who were aged around six years at the time).

The research revealed that 90 percent of participants grew up with a father or father-figure.

“For more than 80 percent of respondents this was their biological father while for others the role was filled by step, adoptive or foster parents, other family and non-family members,” says Dr Morton.

“This suggests that there was considerable diversity amongst those who were father figures to the previous generation as they were growing up,” she says. “This study presents a snapshot of the situation when the children are six, and we expect that this will continue to evolve as they grow up and family relationships change.

“The longitudinal nature of Growing Up in New Zealand gives us the capacity to track these changes and their impact on child wellbeing and development,” says Dr Morton.

The 73 percent of participants who grew up with a father or father figure said that, compared with that relationship, they were more involved with their children.

Following the launch, the reports will be available at: Who are today's dads?