Excerpt from abstract
This paper is a comparative analysis of the gender gaps in the non-paid domestic and care work (NPDCW) undertaken in homes in Argentina, Chile, Spain and Uruguay. The explanatory factors of this gap in two-income households and their magnitude and impact on the distribution of NPDCW are analyzed using data from national time use surveys. The weakness of micro-sociological approaches and the variables related to relative resources and time availability is demonstrated using the estimation of a regression model, while the importance of approximations of gender roles and analyses that incorporate macro-sociological factors is shown. Furthermore, the findings show that NPDCW is done by women in 70% of cases with women’s incomes and time availability among the individual variables that drive change within the couple. The results show that the equalizing effects of time availability and gender ideology are stronger for women in more egalitarian countries; women in less egalitarian countries benefit less from their individual-level assets. Additional comparative analysis shows that other macro-level factors (economic development, female labor-force participation, gender norms and welfare systems) may also influence the division of this work. The results suggest that changes in individual-level factors alone may not be enough to achieve an equal division of labor in the household without a parallel reduction in macro-level gender inequality.