The moral habitus of fatherhood: A study of how men negotiate the moral demands of becomming a father

Lead Research Organisation: University of Birmingham
Department Name: Health and Population Sciences

Abstract

Academic and policy interest in fathering and fatherhood in the UK has been steadily growing over the past few decades, with fatherhood often placed high on the political agenda. Concerns about the social and economic costs of absent and unwilling fathers continue to be voiced in both the popular media and political arena. Underpinning this is a belief that willing and involved fathers are beneficial to both children and society, and this has given rise to various initiatives, both local and national, to attempt to engage men in fathering, in the hope that they will become involved and active fathers.



Using an innovative combination of event diary, telephone interview, and face-to-face interview, this project seeks to undertake a qualitative exploration of mens' experiences of the transition into first time fatherhood - from the 12th week of pregnancy to 8 weeks after the birth. Focussing initially on mens' normative expectations of themselves as fathers, this project will explore the barriers and enablers that men experience as they make the transition into fatherhood, with a view to indentifying ways of better supporting men during this transition.

Publications


10 25 50
 
Description Brigstow Institute Seedcorn funding
Amount £4,965 (GBP)
Organisation University of Bristol 
Sector Academic/University
Country United Kingdom of Great Britain & Northern Ireland (UK)
Start 09/2016 
End 09/2017
 
Description ONEFaR 
Organisation Catholic University of the Sacred Heart
Department Department of Sociology
Country Italy, Italian Republic 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution ONEFaR, the Oxford Network of European Fatherhood researchers, was set up by Tina Miller and Esther Dermot, with founding members from the UK, Italy, Sweden and Denmark. I was invited to join this network as a founding member, based on the work conducted on this ESRC grant.
Collaborator Contribution Participation in network meetings; Participation in Panel session at and the European Society of Family Research conference 2014; Contribution to a special edition of the journal 'Family, Relationships and Societies';
Impact Special edition of the journal 'Family, Relationships and Societies' (details forthcoming);
Start Year 2013
 
Description ONEFaR 
Organisation Malmö University
Country Sweden, Kingdom of 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution ONEFaR, the Oxford Network of European Fatherhood researchers, was set up by Tina Miller and Esther Dermot, with founding members from the UK, Italy, Sweden and Denmark. I was invited to join this network as a founding member, based on the work conducted on this ESRC grant.
Collaborator Contribution Participation in network meetings; Participation in Panel session at and the European Society of Family Research conference 2014; Contribution to a special edition of the journal 'Family, Relationships and Societies';
Impact Special edition of the journal 'Family, Relationships and Societies' (details forthcoming);
Start Year 2013
 
Description ONEFaR 
Organisation Oxford Brookes University
Country United Kingdom of Great Britain & Northern Ireland (UK) 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution ONEFaR, the Oxford Network of European Fatherhood researchers, was set up by Tina Miller and Esther Dermot, with founding members from the UK, Italy, Sweden and Denmark. I was invited to join this network as a founding member, based on the work conducted on this ESRC grant.
Collaborator Contribution Participation in network meetings; Participation in Panel session at and the European Society of Family Research conference 2014; Contribution to a special edition of the journal 'Family, Relationships and Societies';
Impact Special edition of the journal 'Family, Relationships and Societies' (details forthcoming);
Start Year 2013
 
Description ONEFaR 
Organisation University of Bristol
Country United Kingdom of Great Britain & Northern Ireland (UK) 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution ONEFaR, the Oxford Network of European Fatherhood researchers, was set up by Tina Miller and Esther Dermot, with founding members from the UK, Italy, Sweden and Denmark. I was invited to join this network as a founding member, based on the work conducted on this ESRC grant.
Collaborator Contribution Participation in network meetings; Participation in Panel session at and the European Society of Family Research conference 2014; Contribution to a special edition of the journal 'Family, Relationships and Societies';
Impact Special edition of the journal 'Family, Relationships and Societies' (details forthcoming);
Start Year 2013
 
Description Empirical ethics and the moral habitus of fatherhood 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Other academic audiences (collaborators, peers etc.)
Results and Impact Presentation given to the Wellcome Trust funded Interdisciplinary and Empirical Ethics Network, outlining methodological insights developed during the project.

A successful book proposal for en edited collection on Empirical Bioethics - co edited by myself.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2012
 
Description Funded workshop for academics and regulators 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Third sector organisations
Results and Impact The workshop, funded by the Brocher Foundation, was designed to put academics and regulators in conversation about the ways the empirical research data are and can be used to inform reproductive policy. My talked was directly informed by the methodology I used and developed during the ESRC project. The workshop led to special issue of Monash Bioethics review.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2014
URL http://link.springer.com/journal/40592/33/1/page/1
 
Description Morals, medicine and masculinities : moral sense and partner support in the transition to first time fatherhood 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Keynote speaker to the National Council of Women annual Health Committee Seminar 'THE XY FACTOR - Men's Health and the Impact on Women's Health'

Lecturers on the Midwifery course at Birmingham City University told me that they would be changing what they teach about fathers on the basis of my talk.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity Pre-2006,2012
 
Description Presentation and Discussion with local Home Birth Team 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Sparked a great deal of discussion and questions, with professionals seeking advice about how best to engage with men.

Working towards further collaborative research looking at men and home birth decisions. Advising on information material aimed at men about home birth.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2014
 
Description Taking about the 'F' words: Fatherhood and Feminism 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Talk to a group of fathers at a local playgroup encouraging discussion and reflection about fatherhood and fathering practice.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
 
Description The moral habitus of fatherhood 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Policymakers/parliamentarians
Results and Impact A presentation of the project's preliminary finding to a closed workshop, organised by Prof Tina Miller, to disseminate the findings of her 'Men, Work and Family life' project. Mixed audience of academics, NGO's and practitioners and policy makers.

The formation of a European network on fatherhood research (ONEFaR)
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2012
 
Description The moral habitus of fatherhood 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Type Of Presentation Keynote/Invited Speaker
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact A Special session of the AHRC network 'Post-separation families and shared residence: setting the interdisciplinary research agenda for the future'

A project dissemination event organised as a special (non-parellell) session of an AHRC shared parenting network meeting, devoted to obstacles and barriers to shared parenting. The audience was academic, lay and professional.

Requests for more information, and an invitation to be a founding member of an academic network of European fatherhood researchers (ONEFaR)
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2012
URL http://www.birmingham.ac.uk/research/activity/mds/projects/HaPS/PCCS/MESH/AHRC/meeting-4.aspx