The ILO on Care Work and Care Workers

The new International Labour Organization report on care work and care workers is a real milestone. It consolidates and compares data of time devoted to care time for all countries (about 80!) for which time-use survey data are available. It  includes discussion of  wages, working conditions and future shortages in paid care employment. It outlines an ambitious policy agenda, insisting… Read more →

Developing Care

The International Development Research Centre (IDRC) of Canada recently commissioned me to review some empirical research they have funded on  the care economy in developing countries. It was exciting to wade into field studies attentive to qualitative as well as quantitative indicators, with important policy implications. Many of the studies have experimental designs (such as examining the impact of child… Read more →

The Book Underway

  Here is my excuse for a long hiatus in my posts: a return to the venerable genre of monograph (a.k.a. “book”) in order to explain to patient readers how an analysis of care work complements intersectional political economy (and vice versa). Check out this Oxfam post for some of the political gist.   Forthcoming from Verso in 2018. Read more →

Measuring Family Policy Effects

As more family leave policies are being put into place, statistical analysis of their specific effects is coming of age. Variation across different regions and over time makes it possible to apply “difference-in-difference” models that control for the effects of confounding variables and yield relatively reliable estimates. The maturation of research on this topic was evident at a session organized… Read more →

Defining “Alternative Systems”

  The topic “alternative economic systems” is generally construed as “economic alternatives to capitalism.” This presumes we agree on what “capitalism” is. I don’t think we do. Many neoclassical economists won’t even use the word “capitalism” referring instead to a “market society” or sometimes a “modern” society. I think this a serious mistake. We need words to describe the institutional… Read more →

Heroine of the Noisy Revolution

Claudia Goldin famously described the dramatic movement of women into paid employment over the course of the twentieth century as a “quiet” revolution of cumulative labor supply decisions. But this revolution had its noisy moments, and its noisy advocates, among them the magnificently noisy Barbara Bergmann. Barbara never denied the relevance of individual choice. But she emphasized the institutional structures… Read more →

China’s Looming Care Crisis

Guest post by Barbara E. Hopkins, Wright State University. The Chinese Communist Party has officially abandoned the “one-child” policy and now allows all married couples to have two children. However welcome this policy shift, it is unlikely to fend off the worsening care crisis associated with an aging population. The New York Times reports that only 12% of eligible couples responded… Read more →

The Massachusetts Pregnant Workers Fairness Act

Guest post by Laura Sylvester, graduate student at the Center for Public Policy and Administration and the School of Public Health and Health Sciences, University of Massachusetts Amherst. Laura drafted the initial version of the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act and has been actively involved in organizing and advocating for its passage for the past 18 months. The Massachusetts Pregnant Workers… Read more →