Gretchen Perry

Associate ProfessorGretchen Perry

Elsie Locke Building 323
Internal Phone: 91020

Research Interests

Dr. Gretchen Perry does research focused on non-parental caregivers of children, and their impact on child well-being and outcomes. She comes to this work based on a 25 year career in social services work with vulnerable individuals and families. Dr. Perry has an M.S.W. which is complemented by her Ph.D. in cultural anthropology. This has allowed her to work across disciplines, using a culturally comparative approach.

My research interests include the effects of cultural variation on non-parental caregiving of children, and fosterage and adoption. I have conducted field work in rural Bangladesh. I use qualitative and quantitative methods from epidemiology and ethnography, as well as structured interviews. I continue to be interested in child protection research in Canada, as well as the impact of immigration on childcare and subsequent child development.

My current research focuses on the "matrilateral bias" (the persistent pattern of mother's extended family investing more in children, on average, than father's extended family) found around the world.

Recent Publications

  • Perry G. and Daly M. (2021) A Cinderella effect in the childcare assistance provided by European grandparents. Evolution & Human Behavior Forthcoming: 14.
  • Perry G. and Daly M. (2021) Grandparental partnership status and its effects on caring for grandchildren in Europe. PLoS ONE 16(3 March) http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0248915.
  • Perry G. and Daly M. (2020) Substitute Parenting. In Workman L; Reader W; Barkow JH (Ed.), The Cambridge Handbook of Evolutionary Perspectives on Human Behavior: 481-488.Cambridge University Press. http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/9781108131797.
  • Daly M. and Perry G. (2019) Grandmaternal childcare and kinship laterality. Is rural Greece exceptional? Evolution and Human Behavior 40(4): 385-394. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.evolhumbehav.2019.04.004.
  • Daly M. and Perry G. (2017) Matrilateral bias in human grandmothering. Frontiers in Sociology 2: 11-11.