LabFam seminar series: Income loss and leave taking: The importance of labour market collective agreements for parental leave use
Speaker: Ann-Zofie Duvander, Stockholm University
Research have found strong support for the assumption that a major reason for the gendered division of parental leave is the financial compensation during leave. Swedish national parental leave benefit provides 77.6 percent of earlier earnings up to a ceiling and a substantive share o especially fathers hit this ceiling. On increasing number of work places collective agreements between union and employers’ organisation cover the income loss above the ceiling during leave. We focus on the importance of such collective agreements by examining fathers’ parental leave take-up across the 2000s, as agreements were expanded during this period in time. The main division of agreements is between the state, the municipality and county, and the private sector. Results indicate that fathers with income above the ceiling increase their use over the time period. Especially in the private sector a polarisation can be seen, where fathers with above ceiling income increase their leave use, while fathers with below ceiling income fall behind. Nevertheless, we find only small differences in trends in leave take-up between fathers’ in different sectors. The results will be discussed from a policy perspective, especially regarding how economic and other incentives to leave taking will matter at different points in time.
About the Speaker: Ann-Zofie Duvander is Professor of Demography. Her research interests include family policy as well as the family and work-connection. She is an expert on parental leave policies in Sweden, with a special focus on leave taken by fathers. In addition to studies of parental leave and child care effects on childbearing, she has conducted several studies of variation and change in parental leave usage and its effects. She has also been involved in comparative Nordic and international studies.