Gender, Time Use and Public Policy over the Life Cycle
In this paper we compare gender differences in the allocation of time to market work, domestic work, child care, and leisure over the life cycle. Time use profiles for these activity categories are constructed on survey data for three countries: Australia, the UK and Germany. We discuss the extent to which gender differences and life cycle variation in time use can be explained by public policy, focusing on the tax treatment of the female partner and on access to high quality, affordable child care. Profiles of time use, earnings and taxes are compared over the life cycle defined on age as well as on phases that represent the key transitions in the life cycle of a typical household. Our contention is that, given the decision to have children, life cycle time use and consumption decisions of households are determined by them and by public policy. Before children arrive, the adult members of the household have high labour supplies and plenty of leisure. The presence of pre-school children, in combination with the tax treatment of the second earner's income and the cost of bought-in child care, dramatically change the pattern of time use, leading to large falls in female labour supply. We also highlight the fact that, in the three countries we study, female labour supply exhibits a very high degree of heterogeneity after the arrival of children, and we show that this has important implications for public policy.
|Date of creation:||Nov 2005|
|Date of revision:|
|Publication status:||published in: Oxford Review of Economic Policy, 2005, 21(3), 439-461|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: IZA, P.O. Box 7240, D-53072 Bonn, Germany|
Phone: +49 228 3894 223
Fax: +49 228 3894 180
Web page: http://www.iza.org
|Order Information:|| Postal: IZA, Margard Ody, P.O. Box 7240, D-53072 Bonn, Germany|
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Oded Galor & David N. Weil, 1993.
"The Gender Gap, Fertility, and Growth,"
NBER Working Papers
4550, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Attanasio, O. & Low, H. & Sanchez-Marcos, V., 2004.
"Explaining Changes in Female Labour Supply in a Life-cycle Model,"
Cambridge Working Papers in Economics
0451, Faculty of Economics, University of Cambridge.
- Orazio Attanasio & Hamish Low & Virginia Sanchez-Marcos, 2008. "Explaining Changes in Female Labor Supply in a Life-Cycle Model," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(4), pages 1517-52, September.
- Virginia Sanchez-Marcos & Orazio Attanasio & Hamish Low, 2004. "Explaining Changes in Female Labour Supply in a Life-Cycle Model," 2004 Meeting Papers 492, Society for Economic Dynamics.
- Deaton, Angus, 1992. "Understanding Consumption," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780198288244, December.
- Martin Browning & Annamaria Lusardi, 1995.
"Household Saving: Micro Theories and Micro Facts,"
Department of Economics Working Papers
1995-02, McMaster University.
- Patricia Apps, 2002.
"Why an Earned income tax credit program is a mistake for Australia,"
Australian Journal of Labour Economics (AJLE),
Bankwest Curtin Economics Centre (BCEC), Curtin Business School, vol. 5(4), pages 549-568, December.
- Patricia Apps, 2001. "Why an Earned Income Tax Credit Program is a Mistake for Australia," CEPR Discussion Papers 431, Centre for Economic Policy Research, Research School of Economics, Australian National University.
- Henriette Engelhardt & Alexia Prskawetz, 2002. "On the changing correlation between fertility and female employment over space and time," MPIDR Working Papers WP-2002-052, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany.
- Florence Jaumotte, 2003. "Female Labour Force Participation: Past Trends and Main Determinants in OECD Countries," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 376, OECD Publishing.
- Kathryn Shaw, 1994. "The Persistence of Female Labor Supply: Empirical Evidence and Implications," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 29(2), pages 348-378.
- Apps, P.F. & Rees, R., 1998.
"On the Taxation of Trade Within and Between Households,"
337, Australian National University - Department of Economics.
- Apps, Patricia & Rees, Ray, 1999. "On the taxation of trade within and between households," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 73(2), pages 241-263, August.
- Martin Browning & Thomas F. Crossley, 2000.
"The Life Cycle Model of Consumption and Saving,"
Social and Economic Dimensions of an Aging Population Research Papers
28, McMaster University.
- Tomas Kögel, 2004.
"Did the association between fertility and female employment within OECD countries really change its sign?,"
Journal of Population Economics,
Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 17(1), pages 45-65, February.
- Tomas Kögel, 2001. "Did the association between fertility and female employment within OECD countries really change its sign?," MPIDR Working Papers WP-2001-034, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany.
- Richard Blundell & Martin Browning & Costas Meghir, 1993.
"Consumer demand and the life-cycle allocation of household expenditures,"
IFS Working Papers
W93/11, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
- Richard Blundell & Martin Browning & Costas Meghir, 1994. "Consumer Demand and the Life-Cycle Allocation of Household Expenditures," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 61(1), pages 57-80.
- Boskin, Michael J. & Sheshinski, Eytan, 1983.
"Optimal tax treatment of the family: Married couples,"
Journal of Public Economics,
Elsevier, vol. 20(3), pages 281-297, April.
- Michael J. Boskin & Eytan Sheshinski, 1979. "Optimal Tax Treatment of the Family: Married Couples," NBER Working Papers 0368, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Patricia Apps & Ray Rees, 2001.
"Household Saving and Full Consumpyion Over the Life Cycle,"
CEPR Discussion Papers
428, Centre for Economic Policy Research, Research School of Economics, Australian National University.
- Apps, Patricia & Rees, Ray, 2001. "Household Saving and Full Consumption over the Life Cycle," IZA Discussion Papers 280, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
- Patricia Apps & Ray Rees, 2010.
"Fertility, Female Labor Supply and Public Policy,"
- Iza Padilla, María Amaya & Ferrero Martínez, Dolores, 2002.
"Skill premium effects on fertility and female labor force supply,"
DFAEII Working Papers
2002-15, University of the Basque Country - Department of Foundations of Economic Analysis II.
- Dolores Ferrero Martínez & Amaia Iza, 2004. "Skill premium effects on fertility and female labor force supply," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 17(1), pages 1-16, February.
- John Pencavel, 1998. "The Market Work Behavior and Wages of Women: 1975-94," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 33(4), pages 771-804.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp1855. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Mark Fallak)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.