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Part-Time Jobs: What Women Want?

  • Booth, Alison L.

    ()

    (Australian National University)

  • van Ours, Jan C.

    ()

    (Tilburg University)

Part-time jobs are popular among partnered women in many countries. In the Netherlands the majority of partnered working women have a part-time job. Our paper investigates, from a supply-side perspective, if the current situation of abundant part-time work in the Netherlands is likely to be a transitional phase that will culminate in many women working full-time. We analyze the relationship between part-time work and life satisfaction, and between job satisfaction and preferred working hours using panel data on life and job satisfaction for a sample of partnered women and men. We also utilize time-use data to consider the distribution within the household of market work and housework, and discuss the work specialization hypothesis in this context. Our main results indicate that partnered women in part-time work have high levels of job satisfaction, a low desire to change their working hours, and live in partnerships in which household production is highly gendered. Taken together, our results suggest that part-time jobs are what most Dutch women want.

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Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 4686.

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Length: 32 pages
Date of creation: Jan 2010
Date of revision:
Publication status: published online in: Journal of Population Economics, 2012, [Online First]
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp4686
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  1. Rosen, Sherwin, 1983. "Specialization and Human Capital," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 1(1), pages 43-49, January.
  2. Alan Manning & Barbara Petrongolo, 2008. "The Part-Time Pay Penalty for Women in Britain," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 118(526), pages F28-F51, 02.
  3. Clark, Andrew E., 1997. "Job satisfaction and gender: Why are women so happy at work?," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 4(4), pages 341-372, December.
  4. Booth, Alison L. & van Ours, Jan C., 2007. "Job satisfaction and family happiness: the part-time work puzzle," ISER Working Paper Series 2007-20, Institute for Social and Economic Research.
  5. Booth, Alison L & van Ours, Jan C, 2005. "Hours of Work and Gender Identity: Does Part-Time Work Make the Family Happier?," CEPR Discussion Papers 5438, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  6. Nicole Bosch & B. van der Klaauw, 2010. "Analyzing female labor supply: Evidence from a Dutch tax reform," CPB Discussion Paper 155, CPB Netherlands Bureau for Economic Policy Analysis.
  7. Mary Gregory & Sara Connolly, 2007. "Moving Down: Women`s Part-time Work and Occupational Change in Britain 1991-2001," Economics Series Working Papers 359, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
  8. Bruno S. Frey & Alois Stutzer, 2002. "What Can Economists Learn from Happiness Research?," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 40(2), pages 402-435, June.
  9. Alison L. Booth & Melvyn B. Coles, 2008. "Tax Policy and Returns to Education," CEPR Discussion Papers 591, Centre for Economic Policy Research, Research School of Economics, Australian National University.
  10. Blank, Rebecca M, 1989. "The Role of Part-Time Work in Women's Labor Market Choices over Time," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 79(2), pages 295-99, May.
  11. Johannes Schwarze & Rainer Winkelmann, 2011. "Happiness and altruism within the extended family," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, vol. 24(3), pages 1033-1051, July.
  12. Ada Ferrer-i-Carbonell & Paul Frijters, 2004. "How Important is Methodology for the estimates of the determinants of Happiness?," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 114(497), pages 641-659, 07.
  13. repec:dgr:kubcen:200769 is not listed on IDEAS
  14. George A. Akerlof & Rachel E. Kranton, 2000. "Economics And Identity," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 115(3), pages 715-753, August.
  15. Nicole Bosch & Anja Deelen & Rob Euwals, 2010. "Is Part-time Employment Here to Stay? Working Hours of Dutch Women over Successive Generations," LABOUR, CEIS, vol. 24(1), pages 35-54, 03.
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