Thursday, November 29, 2007

And Now ... The Well-Done Research

Lest you think I spend all my time going after researchers who write lousy research papers on how at-home dads may be hampering the educational readiness of their sons, I want to flag a wonderful analysis of 24 studies of fatherhood by a group of researchers from New Zealand's Maxim Institute called Going Further With Fathers (pdf).

The conclusion after poring over those 24 studies was that there is a staggering amount of evidence that fathers play a unique role in the lives of their children, and that the impact of fatherhood is greatest the more involved a father is.

From the press release:
"This report should be a wake-up call for some fathers, who need to step up and take their job seriously. Businesses should consider flexible working arrangements so that fathers can spend time with their children. The media needs to recognise its social responsibility to portray balanced father role models. The Family Court should also consider the benefits of positive father involvement when making parenting arrangements. Those providing services to families need to do a better job of treating the father as a parent in his own right, not simply as a support person for the mother," says Daniel Lees, Maxim Institute Researcher.
Peter Baylies at athomedad.com has a nice breakdown of what each of the studies says about fatherhood. And this is a great excuse to point to Daddy Types' takedown of the latest how-to-raise-your-kid piece in Details magazine ("Are You Raising a Douchebag"), which illustrates why we can't leave the child-rearing advice to the journalists.

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