In their paper on ‘total work’, Dan Hamermesh and coauthors add up market and household work, and point out that in rich countriesÂ on four continents, there is no difference â€” men and women do the same amount of total work. When I blogged on this last year, I even showed the graphical pattern of results for Australia, which look strikingly symmetrical. In their writeup, Hamermesh and coauthors modestly point out that sociologists seem to have known about this result for years, but it appears new to economists.
Well, maybe not all sociologists. Here’s one Australian sociologist, commentingÂ today on the fact that women do more household work than men.
“The headline story here is it’s still unequal,” said Gabrielle Meagher, professor in social policy at the University of Sydney. “Women are still doing twice as much as men.”
* Admittedly, the Hamermesh papers uses 1992 data for Australia, while the quote relates to the 2006 time use survey. But in the absence of any evidence that the pattern of ‘total work’ has shifted, I’m inclined to assume that the 1992 finding still holds.