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Data from: Modelling social care provision in an agent-based framework with kinship networks

Citation

Gostoli, Umberto; Silverman, Eric (2019), Data from: Modelling social care provision in an agent-based framework with kinship networks, Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.h69t34v

Abstract

Current demographic trends in the UK include a fast-growing elderly population and dropping birth rates, and demand for social care amongst the aged is rising. The UK depends on informal social care -- family members or friends providing care -- for some 50% of care provision. However, lower birth rates and a graying population mean that care availability is becoming a significant problem, causing concern amongst policy-makers that substantial public investment in formal care will be required in decades to come. In this paper we present an agent-based simulation of care provision in the UK, in which individual agents can decide to provide informal care, or pay for private care, for their loved ones. Agents base these decisions on factors including their own health, employment status, financial resources, relationship to the individual in need, and geographical location. Results demonstrate that the model can produce similar patterns of care need and availability as is observed in the real world, despite the model containing minimal empirical data. We propose that our model better captures the complexities of social care provision than other methods, due to the socioeconomic details present and the use of kinship networks to distribute care amongst family members.

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