Intergenerational mobility of housework time in the United Kingdom

Publication type

Research Paper

Series Number



IZA Discussion Papers


Publication date

November 15, 2014


This paper analyzes the relationship between parents’ time devoted to housework and the time devoted to housework by their children. Using data from the Multinational Time Use Study for the UK, we find positive intergenerational correlations in housework for both parents, indicating that the more time parents devote to housework, the more time their children will devote to housework. However, when endogeneity of the uses of time are considered using the British Household Panel Survey, we find that only fathers’ housework time appears to have a statistically significant effect. The IV estimates fully support the FE estimates and suggest that father’s housework induced by his partner’s non-traditional gender role attitudes towards domestic division of labour and her actual labour supply in the previous wave, has a large and significant effect on children’s housework time. Our results contribute to the field of intergenerational mobility of behaviors.
• study intergenerational mobility of housework using time use data and panel survey
• time use survey results show positive effect of both parents’ housework time
• however, fixed-effect results indicate that only fathers’ housework time matters
• father’s housework instrumented by mother’s non-traditional gender role attitudes
• instrumental variable results consistent with fixed-effect estimates



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