Conceptualizing and Measuring “Healthy Marriages” for Empirical Research and Evaluation Studies: Recommendation Memos from Experts in the Field (Task Two)

Research BriefFamiliesJun 1 2003

This summary on the conceptualization and measurement of healthy couple relationships is based on the recommendations of scholars and professionals with expertise in this area, who prepared brief background memos for this project. The recommendations were solicited by Child Trends with funding and input from the Administration for Children and Families. The memos we commissioned are just one part of a larger project designed to further the measurement of healthy marriages, particularly among low-income families with children. In accordance with this goal, the writers were asked to elaborate on measurement for the following groups, as expertise permitted: low-income; racial/ethnic minorities; cohabiting and visiting couples; couples with and without children; couples co-parenting after relationship dissolution; and the incarcerated. The short papers produced a number of insights.