Does telecommuting change how couples share tasks? Do work-at-home fathers perform more domestic and parenting duties than those who work outside? To find out, Julie Landour, lecturer in sociology at PSL Paris-Dauphine University and researcher at the Institute for Interdisciplinary Research in Social Sciences, conducted a qualitative survey in 2020, together with seven other researchers, funded in France, Sweden and Switzerland. National Research Agency.
At the conclusion of this study published by the Social Science Foundation, the sociologist observes significant contrasts between the three countries. “Only the transformation of working conditions and, in particular, its location in the home, is not enough to affect the gender division of labor.”he analyzes.
You believe that the sharing of domestic and parental tasks is the basis of gender equality. For what ?
The issue of division of labor is one of the keys to gender equality. In order for a man or woman to devote time and energy to professional activities, at the same time, they must be able to “produce” daily activities: cooking, doing laundry, doing housework, taking care of children. However, this work relies heavily on women, who spend twice as much time as men caring for children or a dependent adult at home. Therefore, they cannot invest themselves in the professional or public sphere in the same way as their spouses.
Until the task-sharing equation is resolved, it will be difficult for women to fully engage in their careers, politics, and creative or recreational activities. Their activity rate is high – 67% of French women aged 15 to 64 are in the workforce – but the domestic inequality that appears as soon as a couple is formed explodes with the arrival of the first, the second and above all the third. Child: Almost 40% of employed women experience a change in professional activity after their first birth, almost 60% after their third child. Many of them, especially the less privileged, are forced to give up work and then find it difficult to return to work.
Why are you interested in remote work?
Before the health crisis of 2020, I dedicated a survey to women who create businesses, “mompreneurs”. Most of them carry out their professional activities at home, in a more or less equipped space, because they want to invest in their work and be with their children. However, they are very quickly absorbed, even drowned, in parenting and domestic work: their husbands usually excuse themselves from it on the grounds that their wives spend their days at home.
Source: Le Monde