INNOTARS project

Our Association was successful at the call for competition called Innovation and Society published by the National Office for Research and Technology. The title of our winning project is “The connection of the economical progress and the state of health of Hungarian society with the stability of families”.


Explanation of the social necessity of our project

The formation of good families and stable households is important for the improvement of quality of life, maintenance of people’s physical and mental health, social security and for economical competivity. (Mária Kopp, 2006). Grave family problems have a negative effect on work performance, reduce the efficacity of time spent in work and augment the number of days out of work. Sole parent families emerging as a result of divorce cost more to the state in the aspect of social welfare which entails that funds potentially available for the support and development of economy are used elsewhere. Above all these divorce or the deterioration of relationships resulting in divorce may have indirect or postponed social and economical consequences such as homelessness, alcoholism and psychological problems which put a strain on the social and medical system and the increase in ratio of single people increases the number of those who can’t count on their spouse’s assistance and therefore are in need of state care. Shortcomings in the social insertion of generations growing up in sole parent families decrease the number of people capable of work and increase the extent of deviance, criminal activities, the damage and expenses relating to them most of which are borne by the state putting a strain on the economy.

The objective of the project is to mesure the economic and social damages caused by the lack of good and lasting marriages in Hungary as well as to analyse the obstacles to the formation and maintenance of such marriages. Our aim is to rank harmful factors according to their gravity, to formulate useful approaches and to examine other countries’ observations. Based on the surveys we would like to find solutions to decrease the discrepancies between the principles proving to be correct and the practice as well as to formulate recommendations. In our surveys we treat the following areas separately: assessment of young people’s normes on sexuality and relationships, effects of work related stress on relationships, effects of marriage break-downs and divorce on health, economy and budget. Results and recommendations will be made public through scientific articles, brochures and series of conferences and lectures.


Our tasks outlined in the project

  • We would like to assess young people’s family values, behaviour and norms regarding relationships and their attitude towards sexuality by conducting a national survey on a representative sample of 1700 people aged 15-50. (The first part of this survey is directed to young people aged 15-35.) The quality of the functioning of marriages and cohabiting couples is strongly influenced by the antecedents of the walk of life and of the relationship as well as the es forming the behaviour of their actors. Such a survey can provide an extensive picture on the behaviour and notions of young people regarding relationships which form and influence the foundation of marriages. After summarizing the survey we will analyse the effect of detected habits and norms on relationships and through them on quality of life, physical and mental health of Hungarian society, social security and economical development.
  • We would like to analyse the effect that the work place and marriage have on each other. We will examine the effect of work related stress and overwork on the quality of marriage as well as the effect of malfunctioning and problems within marriage on work performance and being absent from work. Besides the economical sphere we wish to assess the state’s expenses from the point of view of the consequences of divorce. We would like to analyse these on the one hand with the help of the second part of the above mentioned survey and on the other hand by using the database of HUNGAROSTUDY 2005. We will also use macrostatistical, economical, social and health care data in our analysis.
  • We will look at trainings aiming to prevent the deterioratiuon of marriages, Hungarian examples as well as foreign ones. We would like to study the successful experiences of foreign countries in detail. Organisations providing premarriage councelling aiming to enhance the good functioning of marriages are proven to be efficient. We wish to examine the possibility of adapting successful foreign experiences to the widest possible level in Hungary by introducing the most efficient programmes in secondary schools as alternative subjects or pilot projects. We will compare all this to the effect of the programmes on relationships and through them on the economy. Finally we will summarize the results of our project in reports and scientific articles.
  • We will organise a conference where the results will be made public for professionals and for all.

As a conclusion of the project lasting 18 months, in the last 6 months we will hold a series of talks where again we will present the results both to professionals and to the large public.

 NKTH support