The use of time during the daily life of dual-earner couples: productive time and reproductive time in the countries of the south of Europe from a gender perspective

Marc Ajenjo, Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona
Joan Garcia Roman, Centre d’Estudis Demogràfics (CED)

According to various official statistics, some of the basic features of the male breadwinner model persist in the Mediterranean countries, especially in Spain and Italy. The most significant by far is the entry of women to the labour market, which is very recent in both countries, which means that female activity rates are very different from those observed in other countries of the European Union. This lower female activity has an important effect upon the aggregate indicators of time use. Thus statistics show that Spain and Italy are the two European countries where the difference between men and women’s use of time in productive and reproductive activities is greatest. But, what happens in a situation where activity is equal? This paper explores what part of the difference in the use of time between men and women is due to the fact that the female activity is lower and what part is due to differences in the use of time in couples where both members are employed. Thus we analyze dual-earner couples investigating whether there is greater equality between men and women’s use of time and comparing this to what can be observed in the rest of Europe. In those couples with highly unequal time use, we analyze the effect of this inequality in relation to other activities, such as those related to leisure time.

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Presented in Poster Session 1