Despite years of growth in the number of women in paid work, gender roles in unpaid
housework have remained remarkably rigid. Unpaid housework can be outsourced to non-care
household service providers, such as cleaners or housekeepers, however, high prices,
a substantial tax burden and a lack of easy access impose barriers to greater formalisation
of the household service sector. With the aim of increasing work-life balance for
households, in particular for women in employment, and reducing the wide-ranging practice
of undeclared employment, a number of OECD countries have implemented policies to
formalise and boost the provision of non-care household services. This report illustrates
the importance of the non-care household service sector and reviews international
approaches in formalising the non-care household service market, ranging from providing
tax incentives or granting social vouchers, to identify good practice. To highlight
the potential economic gains that could follow from easing the housework burden, the
report also estimates the economic value of unpaid housework provided by men and women.
› van de Ven, P., J. Zwijnenburg and M. De Queljoe (2018), "Including unpaid household activities: An estimate of its impact on macro-economic indicators in the G7 economies and the way forward", OECD Statistics Working Papers, No. 2018/04, OECD Publishing, Paris, https://doi.org/10.1787/bc9d30dc-en.
› Miranda, V. (2011), "Cooking, Caring and Volunteering: Unpaid Work Around the World", OECD Social, Employment and Migration Working Papers, No. 116, OECD Publishing, Paris, https://doi.org/10.1787/5kghrjm8s142-en.