Mobility aptitudes along the life course: a cross-sectional analysis of the process of becoming spatially mobile
Department of Sociology and Laboratory of Urban Sociology University of Geneva and EPFL Lausanne Geneva, Switzerland
Laboratory of Urban Sociology EPFL Lausanne Lausanne, Lausanne
Widmer, Eric D.
Department of Sociology University of Geneva Geneva, Switzerland
In highly advanced societies, propensity for movement within the geographical, social and economic spaces has become a central aspect of professional careers and social integration. If mobility allows people to combine and conciliate situations which were spatially incompatible, it also contributes to the creation of new forms of strain on family dynamics. In a context where the increase of travel time budget and geographical distances is a challenge to family life organisation, motility, i.e. the set of aptitudes that allow one to be mobile, may be used as a resource to deal with those spatial and temporal incompatibilities that actors and families must contend with. Motility is then defined as factors such as: physical capacity, financial means, aspirations towards sedentary or mobile way of life, accessibility to transport and telecommunications systems, acquired skills like driving licence or international English for travel.
The project "Job Mobilities and Family Lives in Europe" is the first large quantitative European survey studying the interactions between family life, professional career and spatial mobility. Of special interest are all forms of job-related high mobility (long distance commuting, bi-residential, migration, etc.). On the basis of this new data, the presentation will show to which extent family life course influences motility, as well as the implications of both dimensions on the process of becoming mobile. National differences across five European countries will be in particular presented.