Department of Economics


Astrid Kunze, NHH: Flexible Work Arrangements for Mothers

Welcome to our research seminar with professor Astrid Kunze, NHH

Title: Flexible Work Arrangements for Mothers


Abstract: In this paper, we (written with Xingfei Liu (University of Alberta and IZA)) study whether and how mothers’ take up of flexible work arrangements is affected by an expansionary reform of childcare targeting the 1-2 years old children in Norway. We focus on work during non-ordinary work hours, such as shift work, evening and night work, Saturday and Sunday work. These forms of flexible work are often assumed to be set by the employer. We present reduced form estimates of the reform in the short and long-term on the take up of non-ordinary work by mothers with children under age 3. The main result is that mothers respond to the childcare reform by an increase in the take up of non-ordinary working hours, and this is a short-term effect of the reform. The average response is more pronounced for women after maternity leave. The increase in non-ordinary working hours is entirely driven by workers who work more than 30 hours per week, not short part-time hours. We interpret these results as showing evidence in favour of the hypothesis that the marginal take up of non-ordinary hours is driven by labour supply factors.