Work, care and gender during the COVID-19 crisis

Publication type

Journal Article


Publication date

September 15, 2020


We explore the effects of the COVID‐19 crisis and the associated restrictions to economic activity on paid and unpaid work for men and women in the United Kingdom. Using data from the COVID‐19 supplement of Understanding Society, we find evidence that labour market outcomes of men and women were roughly equally affected at the extensive margin, as measured by the incidence of job loss or furloughing. But, if anything, women suffered smaller losses at the intensive margin, experiencing slightly smaller changes in hours and earnings. Within the household, women provided on average a larger share of increased childcare needs, but in an important share of households fathers became the primary childcare providers. These distributional consequences of the pandemic may be important to understand its inequality legacy over the longer term.

Published in

Fiscal Studies

Volume and page numbers

Volume: 41 , p.623 -651






© 2020 The Authors

Open Access

This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution‐NonCommercial‐NoDerivs License, which permits use and distribution in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited, the use is non‐commercial and no modifications or adaptations are made

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