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Reconciling Motherhood and Work: Evidence from Time Use Data in Three Countries

In this study we compare evidence based on time use data for three countries: Italy, Germany and Sweden. While in all these countries working mothers appear to dedicate less time to child care than non-working mothers, in Sweden the difference is smallest in absolute terms as well as statistically insignificant. In Italy maternal work is associated with the largest loss of maternal child care. To shed light on the possible reasons for this finding we consider the role of part-time job opportunities and formal or informal child care arrangements. We argue that while child care facilities increase mothers' access to employment, it is the availability of flexible working arrangements that allows them to work and still have enough time to allocate to child care.

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Paper provided by Centre for Studies in Economics and Finance (CSEF), University of Naples, Italy in its series CSEF Working Papers with number 114.

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Date of creation: 01 Feb 2004
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Publication status: Published in D. Hamermesh and G. Pfann (eds.), The Economics of Time Use. Elsevier, 2004
Handle: RePEc:sef:csefwp:114
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  1. Blau, Francine D & Grossberg, Adam J, 1992. "Maternal Labor Supply and Children's Cognitive Development," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 74(3), pages 474-81, August.
  2. Hanushek, Eric A, 1992. "The Trade-Off between Child Quantity and Quality," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 100(1), pages 84-117, February.
  3. Richard Breen & Cecilia Garcia-Penalosa, 2002. "Bayesian Learning and Gender Segregation," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 20(4), pages 899-922, October.
  4. Becker, Sascha O. & Bentolila, Samuel & Fernandes, Ana & Ichino, Andrea, 2004. "Job Insecurity and Children’s Emancipation," IZA Discussion Papers 1046, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  5. Aghion, Philippe & Hermalin, Benjamin, 1990. "Legal Restrictions on Private Contracts Can Enhance Efficiency," Journal of Law, Economics and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 6(2), pages 381-409, Fall.
  6. Christopher J. Ruhm, 2004. "Parental Employment and Child Cognitive Development," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 39(1).
  7. Desai, S. & Chase-Lansdale, P.L. & Michael, R.T., 1988. "Mother Or Market? Effects Of Maternal Employment On Cognitive Development Of Four-Year-Old Children," University of Chicago - Economics Research Center 88-11, Chicago - Economics Research Center.
  8. Anderson, Patricia M. & Butcher, Kristin F. & Levine, Phillip B., 2003. "Maternal employment and overweight children," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 22(3), pages 477-504, May.
  9. Leibowitz, Arleen, 1974. "Education and Home Production," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 64(2), pages 243-50, May.
  10. repec:ese:iserwp:2000-31 is not listed on IDEAS
  11. C. Russell Hill & Frank P. Stafford, 1980. "Parental Care of Children: Time Diary Estimates of Quantity, Predictability, and Variety," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 15(2), pages 219-239.
  12. Leibowitz, Arleen, 1974. "Home Investments in Children," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 82(2), pages S111-S131, Part II, .
  13. Daniela Del Boca, 2002. "The effect of child care and part time opportunities on participation and fertility decisions in Italy," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, vol. 15(3), pages 549-573.
  14. C. Russell Hill & Frank P. Stafford, 1974. "Allocation of Time to Preschool Children and Educational Opportunity," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 9(3), pages 323-341.
  15. Janet Currie & V. Joseph Hotz, 2001. "Accidents Will Happen? Unintentional Injury, Maternal Employment, and Child Care Policy," NBER Working Papers 8090, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  16. Bentolila, S. & Ichino, A., 2000. "Unemployment and Consumption: are Job Losses Less Painful Near the Mediterranean?," Papers 0010, Centro de Estudios Monetarios Y Financieros-.
  17. Ermisch, John & Francesconi, Marco, 2000. "The Effect of Parents' Employment on Children's Educational Attainment," IZA Discussion Papers 215, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  18. Gronau, Reuben, 1976. "The Allocation of Time of Israeli Women," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 84(4), pages S201-20, August.
  19. Reuben Gronau & Daniel S. Hamermesh, 2006. "Time Vs. Goods: The Value Of Measuring Household Production Technologies," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 52(1), pages 1-16, 03.
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