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The Dynamics of Motherhood: An Intergenerational Project

The Dynamics of Motherhood: An Intergenerational Project


Project Description

The Dynamics of Motherhood funding enabled a longitudinal extension of the Making of Modern Motherhoods (MoMM, 2005-2007) research project, originally funded as part of the ESRC’s Identities and Social Action programme.

The original project involved 62 interviews with a diverse group of first time mothers aged between 15 and 49, predominantly recruited from two geographical locations: a new town and an inner city suburb. The sample was supplemented with cases recruited from specialist networks to ensure diversity in terms of age, sexuality, disability and fertility.

From the 62 interviews, volunteers were sought to take part in twelve case studies, which included interviews with grandmothers and significant others and well as a second interview with the mother a year after the birth of the child.

The Dynamics of Motherhood study enabled us to follow six of these case studies for a further two years (2008-2010) and to explore a range of methodological approaches.

Methods for data collection

Repeat interviews were undertaken with each member of the case study, involving innovative approaches including the use of a ‘workbook’ and object based interviews. In addition, an observational ‘day in a life’ was undertaken with mothers and babies.

Over the course of the study, four waves of data collection were undertaken with the core case study sample of mothers: two waves in Momm and two in DoM. Two interviews were undertaken with grandmothers and significant others: one in MoMM and one in DoM.

Reports and Publications


Hadfield, L., Kehily, J., Thomson, R. and Sharpe, S. (2011) Dynamics of Motherhood Dataset. University of Leeds, UK: Timescapes Archive. DOI: 10.23635/01