The National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) has found that women and men, at least in Europe and the US, work about the same number of hours in a week. In the US, men only work 4 more minutes a day than women on average. Not that you can’t be infinitely productive in four minutes (at least that’s what I tell my partners myself), but any random tally of minor daily events makes that figure a virtual push.
In terms of how time is spent, many of the nuclear family sitcom stereotypes hold true – men spend more time at work and more time watching the tube while women do more housework and sleep more.
The goal of the study was to try and find out why Americans work harder than Europeans, and whether the notion of the “double burden,” or the fact that women work twice as hard as men because of housework, was true. Many of the female subjects’ complaints that they have less spare time than their male counterparts are explained by the increased hours spent in the sack.
Equality does appear to correlate with prosperity, despite Bess Levin’s findings in Waziristan. From the NBER researchers:
There appears to be a link between the work gap between men and women and how rich a country is. The smaller the gap, the richer the GDP per person. Equality appears to pay.
What about finance? Do male and female analysts work the same 100 hour weeks at a bank? Do MDs of both sexes make equally ridiculous requests before getting on the same 5:15pm train to Greenwich?
Women comprise 42% of the total workforce (age 16 and over) in “management, business and financial operations occupations” (i.e. – finance-type stuff) according to a November 2006 NBER study on Women in the Labor Force (see the data here).
Finance may me a more male-centered occupation, but it is not that much more of a male-centered professional choice. Out of the total women in the labor force, 13.2% decide to go into finance-type stuff. This isn’t that far off the 15.5% of men in the labor force who make the same decision. With a nearly equal percentage of aspirants, it seems that no sex has a monopoly on a passion for finance-type stuff, or at least winging it until b-school or a sugar daddy/momma comes along.
Now, it’s up to DealBreaker readers to decide:
Do men or women work harder? – [BBC]