Production methods, family culture and values & Family relationships
Production methods, family culture and values
The preparation of the three main categories of the index for parents’ production methods and life patterns, termed parents’ working life pattern in the index, was motivated by Danish research into “life patterns in Denmark”: Christensen (1987,1988) and Højrup (1993,1995). All three are motivated specifically by production method analyses.
- family cohesion and identity
- identity of the individual family member
- integration in life (understanding life as an entity)
- direction of progress
- social reference group, lifestyle
- security, cosiness, peace and quiet, intimacy
- independence, self-sufficiency
- common sense, level-headedness
- control and mastery
The parental life pattern category is a relatively new concept which is based on analyses of parents’ roles as parents within the family unit. These take into account the many different forms of family relationships including responsibility for children. (See also Today (1996) in “Modern Childhood” - Chapter 15.)
The categories have been revised and adapted to the analyses of toys and play on the basis of several research projects related to life patterns, living conditions for families with children and close family relationships, including Bjarne Hjorth Andersen (1991), F.K. Hansen (1990), Dencik (1988), Christoffersen (1987), Christensen (1987), Sommer (1984) and Højrup (1983).
Schousboe’s (1990:56-65) research and analyses cover (young people’s) attitudes to the future and their angst, inclinations or expectations about future developments, their dreams about change or renewal in the future and their understanding and recognition of what constitutes “the good life”, including “freedom and free time ideals”.
Within the field of general scientific knowledge, this category is really “a value” which may or may not be characteristic of a life pattern category - but it is indeed not in itself a life pattern!
In her accounts of various lifestyles, Schousboe is also aware of the fact that people whose view of life isn’t complex are few and far between. It is nevertheless possible to state that one view of life predominates at the expense of the others. Personal instrumental values and characteristics, such as flexibility, creativity, readiness to accept change and a capacity to see the wider perspectives, are, for example, particularly associated with industriousness.
Mankind will always be anchored to a complex set of ethnic, national, regional and local traditions and each factor will in its own way represent conditions under which development can take place. These many and varied conditions are fundamental to living conditions and life patterns.
Segmentation is based on this assumption because, while we know that no two people are the same, we also know that some of us are more alike than others. This is what makes segmentation possible. Segmentation consists of finding and utilising differences and similarities within a market, e.g. the toy market, and using them to achieve greater consumer loyalty (and improved competitive edge for the toy manufacturers).
Any toy manufacturer wants to satisfy consumers’ desires and needs - preferably right down to the level of the individual child’s needs - and that is how he creates consumer customer satisfaction.