Center for Marriage and Families

One Parent or Five? A Global Look at Today’s New Intentional Families

Selected Media Coverage

About Elizabeth Marquardt

Elizabeth Marquardt is editor of, where she also blogs. She is vice president for family studies and director of the Center for Marriage and Families at the Institute for American Values in New York City. In spring 2013, she will be a lecturer in American Studies at Lake Forest College.

As an author and study investigator, Elizabeth Marquardt’s questions are animated by a deep curiosity about the family, bodies, bonding, and probing the voices of those not usually heard. She is author of Between Two Worlds: The Inner Lives of Children of Divorce (Crown, 2005). Based on the first nationally-representative study of grown children of divorce in the U.S., she argues that while an amicable divorce is better than a bitter one, even amicable divorces shape the inner lives of children. She is co-investigator of the ground-breaking studies My Daddy’s Name is Donor: A New Study of Young Adults Conceived Via Sperm Donation and Hooking Up, Hanging Out, and Hoping for Mr. Right: College Women on Dating and Mating Today. Her most recent report is One Parent or Five? A Global Look at Today’s New Intentional Families. She is currently co-investigating a project on Gen X caregiving and grieving with Institute affiliate scholar Amy Ziettlow.

Marquardt has appeared often on news programs including NBC’s Today show, CNN, ABC, FOX, CBS, and PBS and scores of radio programs including BBC World News and national and local NPR stations. She has published opinion pieces in the New York Times, Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, Slate, Huffington Post, The Atlantic online, and elsewhere. Her peer-reviewed single authored and co-authored chapters appear in Social Science Research, John Marshall Law Review, and Sociology of Religion, and in forthcoming volumes from New York University Press and Paradigm Press.

Marquardt holds a Master’s in Divinity and an M.A. in international relations from the University of Chicago, and a B.A. in history and women’s studies from Wake Forest University. A frequent presenter to academic and professional groups in the U.S. and internationally, she is married to Lake Forest College politics professor Jim Marquardt, with two children.

About the Commission on Parenthood's Future

Commission members convene scholarly conferences; produce books, reports, and public statements; write for popular and scholarly publications; and engage in public speaking. Its members include the following:

David Blankenhorn, Institute for American Values
Don Browning, University of Chicago Divinity School (Emeritus)
Daniel Cere, McGill University (Canada)
Karen Clark,, co-investigator
Jean Bethke Elshtain, University of Chicago Divinity School
Maggie Gallagher, Institute for Marriage and Public Policy
Norval D. Glenn, University of Texas at Austin, co-investigator
Robert P. George, Princeton University
Amy Laura Hall, Duke University
Timothy P. Jackson, Emory University
Kathleen Kovner Kline, University of Colorado School of Medicine
Suzy Yehl Marta, Rainbows Inc.
Elizabeth Marquardt, Institute for American Values, co-investigator
Mitchell B. Pearlstein, Center of the American Experiment
David Popenoe, Rutgers University (Emeritus)
Stephen G. Post, Center for Medical Humanities, Compassionate Care, and Bioethics at Stony Brook University
Dave Quist, Institute of Marriage and Family Canada
Luis Tellez, Witherspoon Institute
David Quinn, Iona Institute (Ireland)
Amy Wax, University of Pennsylvania Law School
W. Bradford Wilcox, University of Virginia
John Witte, Jr., Emory University
Peter Wood, National Association of Scholars

10 Responses to “One Parent or Five? A Global Look at Today’s New Intentional Families”

  1. [...] One Parent Or Five tracks them around the world. They range from single mothers by choice (intentional motherhood, different from the “I got pregnant by accident” variety) to “families of choice” where as many as five adults claim aspects of the parental function. [...]

  2. MaryBaboo says:

    You have an interesting take. I like it! Great post!

  3. [...] learn more and see citations, read my new report, One Parent or Five: A Global Look at Today’s New Intentional Families, available free online at   This Blogger’s Books [...]

  4. [...] for American Values has authored a fascinating and important (and well-written) report called One Parent or Five? This report describes international trends toward replacing current understandings of the family [...]

  5. Richard brenner says:

    The family structure is under fire. Our society and its social structure may be the cause of so much violence among today’s youth.

  6. [...] probing study of today’s new, alternative family structures and their consequences, “One Parent or Five: A Global Look at Today’s New Intentional Families“, conducted by Elizabeth Marquardt. Comments [...]

  7. John Mayger says:

    I am a “free lance” sperm donor donating via sperm websites. There are many SMCs and lesbians who want and deserve to become mothers. These women are socially infertile. What is the response of a kind and humane society such a genetically programmed need to allow them to achieve their raison d’etre and God’s 3 commands to “be fruitful, Multiply and fill the Earth” Genesis 1:28?
    We could 1) ignore them, 2) Look and pass on or 3) be a “Good Samaritan” and morph them into mothers.
    The discussion needs to address the resultant family construct that allows the children and mothers to develop to their pareto optimum.
    The number of young males refusing to commit to families and the preponderance of gays over lesbians drives us in the direction of legalising Polygamy for SMCs and lesbians. The household dominance of women would also ensure less “Uncles/step fathers” and therefore less child molestation and abuse.
    This would also solve the disconnect in sex drives as women age compared to males so the divorce rate should decline.
    The debate over same sex marriage has hijacked the better solution of legalising polygamy.

  8. [...] and inteƖlect are attempts to see whether they measure up to their rival іn sex appeal sex without love and achievement. These questions aren’t helpful, аs they seldom revеal the lure οf the affair [...]

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  10. Judson says:

    This filling sandwich packs 15 grams of protein and only 180 calories. Day 5: Consume cabbage soup with at least 350-500 grams of beef with some slices of tomato.

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