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The National Work–Life Balance Index©: The European Case

Author

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  • Jose Maria Fernandez-Crehuet

    () (Universidad a Distancia de Madrid)

  • J. Ignacio Gimenez-Nadal

    (University of Zaragoza and CTUR)

  • Luisa Eugenia Reyes Recio

    (Universidad Rey Juan Carlos)

Abstract

Abstract This paper proposes an index to measure the possibilities individuals have to balance their work and life spheres. Using data for 26 European countries, and principal components analysis, we compute the National Work–Life Balance Index© as a combination of five dimensions: Time/Schedule, Work, Family, Health, and Policy. We find that Northern and Central European countries, such as Denmark, the Netherlands, Finland, and Sweden have a higher value of the National Work–Life Balance Index©, compared to Southern and Western European countries, such as Spain, Greece, Portugal, Latvia, and Bulgaria. These results are consistent with existing literature showing that there is a lower proportion of individuals reporting difficulty balancing their work and household responsibilities in Northern countries, compared to other European countries. To the extent that international data becomes comparable, the National Work–Life Balance Index© may help to guide public policies aimed at improving the work–life balance of individuals in countries that are comparatively worse off in this respect.

Suggested Citation

  • Jose Maria Fernandez-Crehuet & J. Ignacio Gimenez-Nadal & Luisa Eugenia Reyes Recio, 2016. "The National Work–Life Balance Index©: The European Case," Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 128(1), pages 341-359, August.
  • Handle: RePEc:spr:soinre:v:128:y:2016:i:1:d:10.1007_s11205-015-1034-2
    DOI: 10.1007/s11205-015-1034-2
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. repec:spr:soinre:v:132:y:2017:i:3:d:10.1007_s11205-016-1341-2 is not listed on IDEAS

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    Keywords

    Europe; National Work–Life Balance Index©; Principal components analysis;

    JEL classification:

    • H53 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - Government Expenditures and Welfare Programs
    • I31 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - General Welfare, Well-Being
    • J81 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor Standards - - - Working Conditions

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