Title: Does teleworking affect housework division and improve the well-being of couples?

Authors: Eleftherios Giovanis

Addresses: Department of Economics, University of Verona, Via dell'Artigliere 8, 37129, Italy

Abstract: This study examines the relationship between teleworking, gender roles and happiness of couples using data from the British Household Panel Survey (BHPS) and the Understanding Society Survey (USS) during the period 1991-2012. Various approaches are followed, including Probit-adapted fixed effects, multinomial logit and instrumental variables (IV). The results support that both men and women who are teleworkers spend more time on housework, while teleworking increases the probability that the household chores examined in this study, such as cooking, cleaning ironing and childcare, will be shared relatively to those who are non-teleworkers. In addition, women are happier when they or their spouse is teleworker, as well as, both men and women are happier when they state that the specific household chores are shared. Thus, women teleworkers may be happier because they can face the family demands and share the household chores with their spouse, increasing their fairness belief about the household division allocation and improving their well-being, expressed by happiness.

Keywords: gender roles; household production; telecommuting; teleworking; well-being; British Household Panel Survey; BHPS; chores; childcare; happiness; housework division; instrumental variables; panel data.

DOI: 10.1504/IJHD.2017.084076

International Journal of Happiness and Development, 2017 Vol.3 No.3, pp.256 - 282

Received: 02 Sep 2016
Accepted: 21 Nov 2016

Published online: 09 May 2017 *

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