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A father reads to his daughter.

UD Professor Rob Palkovitz says fathers should be involved in their children’s lives in many ways

As the norms of American families have changed, so too has fatherhood. It’s become a more engaging and dynamic responsibility. No longer the sole breadwinner in many families, many dads nowadays are fulfilling household roles that their own fathers did not.

This expectation for fathers to be more involved in their children’s lives brings a smile to Rob Palkovitz’s face. As professor of human development and family sciences at the University of Delaware, Palkovitz studies how father involvement affects men and their children. Through his research, he has advocated for new parenting norms for decades, stressing the importance of an affectionate, fun-loving father who is invested in the social and emotional development of his children.

“Men should be involved in fathering in addition to their traditional role as provider,” Palkovitz said. “Men and women are converging in both family and work. Contemporary families are more egalitarian and share work-life balance.”

For 36 years, Palkovitz filled lecture halls at UD, engaging students with revolutionary ideas that proved to be ahead of their time. He taught his final seminar during the 2019 spring semester and will spend next year on sabbatical before retirement.

With Father’s Day on Sunday, June 16, UDaily interviewed Palkovitz on his research, including his latest initiative, The Global Fatherhood Charter, which is a set of guidelines for supporting fatherhood in child development, drafted in consultation with 21 leading child development scholars. You can read the entire The Global Fatherhood Charter at the Child and Family Blog, where Palkovitz is a contributing author.

Read the full article on UDaily.