Does Involved Fathering Produce a Larger Total Workload for Fathers Than for Mothers?: Evidence From Norway.

Journal Name
Family Relations
Journal Volume
Journal Issue
Page Count
Year Published
Author (Individual)
Kitterød, Ragni Hege.
Rønsen, Marit.
Resource Type
Journal Article
Resource Format
Resource Language
Objective: To compare mothers' and fathers' total workloads within couples with different work-time arrangements in a social democratic welfare state (Norway) and explore possible changes in the 1990s and 2000s. Background: Women's double workload in families with two full-time jobs has been well documented. However, some argue that fathers, too, may experience the double burden of market and domestic work as they become more involved in parenting. Method: The data are from the Norwegian Time Use Surveys conducted in 1990, 2000, and 2010 among representative samples of the adult population. A subsample of coupled other-sex-parents with at least one child younger than age 20 years were used in the present study. Total workload is the sum of paid and unpaid work activities reported in a time diary. Standard multivariate ordinary least square regressions were used to explore gender differences. Results: Full-time work for both parents entailed approximately equal total workloads for fathers and mothers. However, fathers' total workload exceeded mothers' in full-time and part-time couples with school-aged children. Conclusion: Despite equal total workloads and reduced specialization, mothers still do less paid work and more family work than fathers in couples where both work full-time in Norway. This is partly related to the gender-segregated labor market. In full-time and part-time couples with school-aged children, fathers' longer working hours are not fully offset by more family work for mothers. Implications: Work–family reconciliation policies promoting mothers' employment and fathers' family work may have the potential to reduce gender imbalances in parent's total workloads and moderate gendered specialization patterns. (Author abstract)

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