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A look at the family
in the world

Research notes in preparation of the
Family Global Compact
A survey on the state of the world research on families’ relations and challenges



In order to create the Family Global Compact, the Dicastery for Laity, Family and Life and the Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences appointed Cisf (Centro Internazionale Studi Famiglia) to conduct a survey on more than 350 Catholic Universities around the world inspired by the Social Doctrine of the Church.The aim was to locate academic institutes or research centers on families and learn about their theoretical and practical research activities, inspired by the more practical part in the Apostolic Exhortation of Pope Francis, Amoris Laetitia, i.e. the points regarding The reality and challenges of families.

The aim of the survey was to learn whether a real and efficient collaboration between Catholic Universities and pastoral care of the Church existed in regard to the theme of family in the light of the Social Doctrine of the Church. This report, published by Cisf, offers a revised synthesis of the actual contents of the survey carried out at international level.


The family, although in difficulty, is the backbone of the society, and as such, solutions to social problems must be sought in it. In this sense, the research carried out that led to the Family Global Compact and here summarized, highlights not only the need that the family is recognized as an ecclesial, economic, political and social subject of every human community, but that families themselves today are made more aware of their essential role.

«We do well to focus on concrete realities, since “the call and the demands of the Spirit resound in the events of history”, and through these “the Church can also be guided to a more profound understanding of the inexhaustible mystery of marriage and the family”»
(AL 31)