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Reconciling work and family in the Czech Republic and the role of social policy Masaryk University Brno Czech Republic Tomáš Sirovátka, Helena Bartáková.

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Presentation on theme: "Reconciling work and family in the Czech Republic and the role of social policy Masaryk University Brno Czech Republic Tomáš Sirovátka, Helena Bartáková."— Presentation transcript:

1 Reconciling work and family in the Czech Republic and the role of social policy Masaryk University Brno Czech Republic Tomáš Sirovátka, Helena Bartáková International CINEFOGO workshop Work – Life Balance in Europe: Possibilities and Constraints. Plovdiv, 4-5 February 2008

2 Research question To what extent are value orientations, preferences and actual strategies for reconciling family and work differentiated in the Czech Republic, which factors influence such differentiation and, finally, how these orientations and strategies correspond with preferences for social policy measures.

3 Method and sample Quantitative analysis 2 data sets: Marriage, work and the family representative survey of women between years of age; if she shared the household with a male partner, he was interviewed as well (over 2,500 respondents) Family, employment, and education 2006 – qouta sample, respondents between years of age living in two- partner family households (1,000 respondents) - suitable for examining the patterns of links among the family, labour market and welfare state

4 Structure of the paper factors influencing the reconciliation of family and work in the following areas, their mutual links a) preferred arrangement of family roles in family and general value orientations b) dimensions of the so-called gender arrangement (Pfau-Effinger 2004) in the CR (preferred and actual arrangements) c) preferences in the field of social policy and their relation to gender arrangements d) summary of findings and discussion from the perspective of family policy

5 Theoretical assumptions on reconciliation of family and work relation between family and work - conflict between both spheres (Beck 1992, 1999; Beck-Gernsheim 1999) new social risk that reinforces social insecurities (Taylor-Gooby 2005) from this perspective =>need for de- familialisation, i.e. liberation of family members from care commitments (Esping-Andersen 1999).

6 Reconciliation of family and work On the other hand: A care gap (Lewis 2006), right to care (Leira 2002, Lewis 2006), care deficit Role of the social (family) policy – to provide choice in reconciliation work and family, protection against social risks at the society level, to ensure public budget balance

7 Reconciliation of family and work complex system of choices, mutually linked decisions about the level and form of participation of partners in the labour market, decisions about childcare arrangements, decisions about the division of care and housework, and the related decisions about arrangement of gender relations between the partners, use of social policy measures

8 Factors influencing the reconciliation of family and work Complex and mutually overlapping factors Cultural (and value) factors (Hakim, Pfau- Effinger) Structural and institutional factors, incl. the role of family policy (Esping-Andersen, Castles, etc.) Links and discrepancies between both (McDonald)

9 Factors influencing the reconciliation of family and work Pfau-Effinger (2004) - gender arrangement – interactions between cultural and structural factors (complex choices) gender culture (values and norms relating to unpaid and paid work, children and childcare, dependency and autonomy) interacts with: gender order - structural in nature – institutions such as the WS, family, LM, and NGOs, and gender structures such as the gender division of labour and power relations Inconsistencies or contradictions => a) institutional lag - when institutions do not in a certain area adapt to changes in preferences b) cultural lag - when the dynamics of cultural norms lags behind the dynamics of social structures and institutions

10 Czech Republic re-familialisation policies encouraging women to leave the labor market for relatively long period (3-4 years) gendered implicit familialism - wide network of childcare facilities (3-6 years), emphasis on benefits (mostly tested benefits), and a long parental leave and very long and relatively generous parental allowance traditional value orientations, e.g. a lower level of support to gender equality, or weaker support to employment of mothers with small children + changes accompanied with a high employment rate of women without or with older children

11 Gender arrangements - findings We are interested in: a) what people want (value orientation, preferences, attitudes)? b) What do they want in the sphere of combination of work and family life and how do they combine them in reality (preferences and strategies)? c) What is the role of social (family) policy in this respect and how these preferences and strategies pursued by the population correspond with preferences for social policy measures?

12 The value foundations of gender arrangements in the CR marked preference for gender equality in employment and in the family - both surveys proportion relatively even of those who prefer the traditional or the modified model of the gender roles, and of those who prefer egalitarian model egalitarian orientation stronger - women (but considerably among men either), especially women with university education; when the respondents partner is a secondary-educated woman or man, in comparison with the situation when the partner has a university degree weaker -women and men with elementary education or vocational training; a child under three years

13 Table 1: Main factors influencing the preference for the egalitarian model of the family (Logistic regression: the dependent variable of preference for the egalitarian model of the family)

14 Preferred gender arrangement in various areas of family life Factor analysis - eleven-item battery of questions - survey Family, Employment, Education asking about the role of men and women 4 factors (60 % of variance) => indexes a) The man and the woman should have equal possibilities and obligations b) The roles of men and women can feasibly be reversed c) It is better if the woman assumes traditional roles d) In the case of women today, we can speak of an intra-role conflict

15 Preferred gender arrangement in various areas of family life strong support to gender equality at the level of more general opportunities and possibilities preference (but not marked) for the traditional arrangement (over the egalitarian arrangement) with respect to the real division of labour within the family respondents are aware of the conflict between the area of employment and family life reflected in the role of women differentiation: in sum - preferences depend on structural factors such as the respondents social status (indicated by education and income): the proportion of egalitarian attitudes increases with increasing social status (especially among women).

16 Key dimensions of the gender arrangement: reality versus attitudes - division of labour within the family - preferred and actual model of childcare - preferred and actual model of the womans participation in the labour market

17 Division of labour within the family balanced proportion of traditional and egalitarian value orientations X traditional division of labour - men devote only about a third of the time to childcare and housework comparing to women differences: - insignificant by the preferred model of the family - education level of the woman and her partner only a minor influence - secondary-educated women – gender gap slightly lower in comparison with both university-educated women and women without secondary education (no difference in childcare) - secondary-educated partner X university-educated partner - women perceive the situation as a problem: their partners would take greater part in childcare (43%), in looking after the household (51%, UE women - 61%)

18 Preferred and actual model of childcare exclusively within the family until the child is 3 years old child is 3 to 4 years old: between 1/3 and 1/5 of the population prefer childcare outside the family (university-educated respondents 48 %, respondents with secondary education 39 %, respondents with elementary or basic vocational education 34 %) child is older than 4 years: % of the popul. outside the fam. preferences rather universal (do not significantly differ according to the model of the family, sex, or ed.) actual childcare arrangement in fact corresponds very well with the reported preferences

19 Preferred and actual model of the womans participation in the labour market womens full-time employment before having children + when children leave home - 90 % only 14 % during the childs pre-school years strong preference for part-time job childs pre-school years - 60 % of women, 57 % of men when the youngest child starts attending school - 50 % of women and men staying home before the youngest child is three years old – 85 % childs pre-school years – 27 % childs school years – 9 % Differ. - university-educated women (and men), younger people, childless people, households where both partners are employed and those who are satisfied with the quality of their work

20 Preferred and actual model of the womans participation in the labour market preferences of a career interruption of 3 (-4) years preferences reflect: - the expected (and accepted?) burden of family responsibilities borne by women - the institutional setting - relatively generous parental benefit until child is four years old (2007: 40 % of the average wage in the public sector), joint taxation + a lack of care facilities for children under three years of age

21 Preferred and actual model of the womans participation in the labour market corresponds with the preferences to the limited extent withdraw from the LM for 3-4 years (30 % of women longer than 3 years) = interrupted career model interrupted career mostly followed by full-time employment child employment gap (related to child rearing) among women with children under 6 years the biggest in Europe - 40 p.p (EC 2007) LFSS - employment rate: child < 3 years - below 10 % 3-year old children - 30 % 4-year old children - 60 % children over 4 years of age - approx %

22 Preferred and actual model of the womans participation in the labour market little use of part-time employment 9 % in the CR (EU-27: 31 %) 20 % immediately after parental leave (85 % no longer than 2 years) rarely among women with older children (against the preferred %) employers reluctance X lack of interest on the part of employees CR - more common in the secondary LM, relatively low level of qualification, low quality employment, low pay (often lower than half the full-time), low-level positions in sales, services or health care increase in unemployment rates after the parental leave + danger of loss in human capital

23 Do families at all reflect on negative consequences of a longer lasting interruption of employment? 40 % of women lost a job or fear that this might happen (against a mere 13 % of men) 47 % of women lost chances to gain a financially rewarding and interesting job or fear that this could happen in connection with child rearing (against 16 % of men) differentiating factors – sex, presence of a child under 3 years of age, education level the risk of worsening position in the labour market is felt less by women with a child under 3 years + less qualified women do not feel the loss of human capital so strongly

24 How preferences and strategies correspond with preferences for social policy measures? preferences of traditionally oriented measures (compensating costs or incomes lost due to child care and child rearing), over measures in favour of the egalitarian model more or less consistent with a) attitudes to mens and womens gender roles, b) preferred childcare arrangement, c) timing and extent of employment of women with small children differentiations (education and preferred family model) - not remarkable lower education + traditional understanding of gender roles => financial support of the existing family model higher education + orientation to the egalitarian model of gender relations => services, access of women to the labour market, more flexible gender roles general pattern is pretty consistent across the population

25 Conclusions: the gender arrangement and social policy Re-familization of the policies is based on institutional and ideological legacies of the past + new socio-economic realities (Saxonberg, Sirovátka 2006) and also on firmly grounded gender arrangement in family and labour market (pattern of the preferences, strategies, institutions) Corresponding preference for general family support (financial compensations for care) This gender arrangement is consistent only to certain extent => institutional lagging in relation to general value preferences, which have shifted towards the egalitarian model (dual earner/dual career) X general conditions in the labour market and the division of labour within the families (traditional)

26 Conclusion: the gender arrangement and social policy preferred model of sequential / interrupted womans career X un-preferred womens full- time involvement later on future direction of social (family) policy ? a) keeping the strategy corresponding to the current gender arrangement (reinforcing gender differences in the LM and households, which is, however, against the general preferences of a large part of the population) b) re-orientation of the family policy towards improving support to such measures which correspond to the egalitarian model => expanding the options for families reconciling family and work


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