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Fathers Matter: Intra-Household Responsibilities and Children's Wellbeing during the COVID-19 Lockdown in Italy

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  • Mangiavacchi, Lucia

    (University of Perugia)

  • Piccoli, Luca

    (University of Trento)

  • Pieroni, Luca

    (University of Perugia)

Abstract

The lockdown declared during the Spring 2020 because of the COVID-19 outbreak caused a reallocation of market and household work. A the same time school closures in many countries impacted on children's lives and their learning process. In Italy, schools and nurseries have been closed during three months and the incidence and quality of distant learning activities has been hetero-geneous over education levels and among schools. Using a real time survey data collected in April 2020 on children's wellbeing, and parents' market and household work, we estimate how the reallocation of intra-household responsibilities during the lock-down has affected children's use of time, their emotional status and their home learning. We find that changes in the parental division of household tasks and childcare are mostly due to the labor market restrictions imposed during the lockdown and that this reallocation increases fathers involvement in childcare and homeschooling. This positive variation in fathers involvement is accompanied by an increase in children's emotional wellbeing while the quality of children's home learning is mostly determined by distant learning activities proposed by their teachers.

Suggested Citation

  • Mangiavacchi, Lucia & Piccoli, Luca & Pieroni, Luca, 2020. "Fathers Matter: Intra-Household Responsibilities and Children's Wellbeing during the COVID-19 Lockdown in Italy," IZA Discussion Papers 13519, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp13519
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    Cited by:

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    2. Gimenez-Nadal, Jose Ignacio & Velilla, Jorge, 2020. "Home-based work, time endowments, and subjective well-being: Gender differences in the United Kingdom," MPRA Paper 104937, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    3. Giulia Bettin & Isabella Giorgetti & Stefano Staffolani, 2022. "The Impact Of Covid-19 Lockdown On The Gender Gap In The Italian Labour Market," Working Papers 460, Universita' Politecnica delle Marche (I), Dipartimento di Scienze Economiche e Sociali.
    4. Werner, Katharina & Woessmann, Ludger, 2021. "The Legacy of COVID-19 in Education," IZA Discussion Papers 14796, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    5. Hugues Champeaux & Lucia Mangiavacchi & Francesca Marchetta & Luca Piccoli, 2022. "Child development and distance learning in the age of COVID-19," Review of Economics of the Household, Springer, vol. 20(3), pages 659-685, September.
    6. Hugues Champeaux & Francesca Marchetta, 2021. "Couples in lockdown, "La vie en rose" ? Evidence from France," CERDI Working papers hal-03149087, HAL.
    7. Del Boca, Daniela & Oggero, Noemi & Profeta, Paola & Rossi, Maria Cristina, 2021. "Did COVID-19 affect the division of labor within the household? Evidence from two waves of the pandemic in Italy," CEPR Discussion Papers 16257, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    8. Marta Pasqualini & Marta Dominguez Folgueras & Emanuele Ferragina & Olivier Godechot & Ettore Recchi & Mirna Safi, 2022. "Who took care of what? The gender division of unpaid work during the first year of the COVID-19 pandemic in France," Demographic Research, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany, vol. 46(34), pages 1007-1036.
    9. Lauren Hoehn-Velasco & Adan Silverio-Murillo & Jose Roberto Balmori de la Miyar & Jacob Penglase, 2022. "The impact of the COVID-19 recession on Mexican households: evidence from employment and time use for men, women, and children," Review of Economics of the Household, Springer, vol. 20(3), pages 763-797, September.
    10. Victoria Costoya & Lucía Echeverría & María Edo & Ana Rocha & Agustina Thailinger, 2020. "The impact of COVID-19 in the allocation of time within couples. Evidence for Argentina," Working Papers 145, Universidad de San Andres, Departamento de Economia, revised Aug 2020.
    11. Anne Boring & Gloria Moroni, 2022. "Turning back the clock: Beliefs about gender roles during lockdown," Post-Print hal-03627187, HAL.
    12. Daniela Del Boca & Noemi Oggero & Paola Profeta & Mariacristina Rossi, 2020. "Women’s and men’s work, housework and childcare, before and during COVID-19," Review of Economics of the Household, Springer, vol. 18(4), pages 1001-1017, December.
    13. Elisa Brini & Stefani Scherer & Agnese Vitali & Mariya Lenko, 2021. "Retraditionalisation? Work patterns of families with children during the pandemic in Italy," Demographic Research, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany, vol. 45(31), pages 957-972.
    14. Anna Zamberlan & Filippo Gioachin & Davide Gritti, 2022. "Gender inequality in domestic chores over ten months of the UK COVID-19 pandemic: Heterogeneous adjustments to partners’ changes in working hours," Demographic Research, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany, vol. 46(19), pages 565-580.
    15. Zoch, Gundula & Bächmann, Ann-Christin & Vicari, Basha, 2020. "Care-Arrangements and Parental Well-Being during the COVID-19 Pandemic in Germany," IAB-Discussion Paper 202035, Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung (IAB), Nürnberg [Institute for Employment Research, Nuremberg, Germany].
    16. Jessen, Jonas & Spieß, C. Katharina & Waights, Sevrin & Wrohlich, Katharina, 2021. "Sharing the Caring? The Gender Division of Care Work during the COVID-19 Pandemic in Germany," IZA Discussion Papers 14457, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    emotional skills; children's education; childcare; parenting; COVID-19;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • I21 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Analysis of Education
    • I24 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Education and Inequality
    • J13 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Fertility; Family Planning; Child Care; Children; Youth
    • J16 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Gender; Non-labor Discrimination

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