Women and unpaid family care work in the EU

Funded by: European Parliament


December 2008 to November 2009

PSI researchers:

Francesca Francavilla

Gianna Giannelli

Background, summary and aims

Background, Scope and Aims

The aim of the study is to provide an analysis of the size and value of unpaid family care work (UFCW) at the European level.

The study will focus on the methods to measure family care work distinguishing among its main components: child care; and old-age and disability care work. The latter is, however, difficult to isolate in the current European surveys. The study will exploit the EU-level information on UFCW contained in the European Statistics on Income and Living Conditions (EU-SILC), in the Harmonized European Time Use Survey (HETUS) and in the European Quality of Life Survey (EQLS). It will also propose a more detailed analysis on two selected European countries, Italy and Poland.

Project Design

The first part of the study will deal with the literature on the links between UFCW and women’s participation and family policies; it will also survey the measurement issues.

The second part of the study will focus on the EU level and the two-country analysis. As to the former, the study will concentrate on the potential ways to build new indicators of UFCW on the basis of EUSILC, HETUS and EQLS. As to the latter, the analysis will make use of methods to match data coming from budget surveys with data drawn from time-use surveys for Poland and Italy. Finally, the last part of the study will assess the relevance of the indicators emerging from the proposed analysis to support policy choices.

Importance of Research

The objective is to improve the indicators on UFCW in order to have a reliable quantitative picture to support policy choices. The more detailed analysis and the methods applied for the Italian and Polish case studies will give a more accurate picture of UFCW. The national surveys could therefore give useful hints on how to improve EU-level statistics to support policy choices.

Related publications / project outputs

Women and Unpaid Family Care Work in the EU