Social Indicators Research

, Volume 136, Issue 1, pp 269–281 | Cite as

Shares of Housework Between Mothers, Fathers and Young People: Routine and Non-routine Housework, Doing Housework for Oneself and Others

  • Lyn CraigEmail author
  • Abigail Powell


We use data from the most recent Australian Bureau of Statistics time use survey to investigate shares of domestic work along two dimensions; routine and non-routine activities, and housework done for the whole household versus housework done for oneself only. We argue that the latter is an underutilised marker of responsibility for household management and serving others. Exploiting data from matched household members, we examine relative shares of fathers and mothers, and also of co-resident young people aged 15–34 (416 households), to include inputs from the younger generation as well as the parental couple. Mothers do the greatest share of routine housework and housework for others; parents are relatively equal in the shares of non-routine housework and housework done for themselves only. Young people take on a minimal share of total household work, particularly tasks done for others in the family. Parents’ employment configuration is associated with adjustments in shares between them, with no effect on children’s shares.


Gender division of labor Housework shares Time use Co-resident young people 



This research was supported by the Australian Research Council Grant Nos. FT150100067, DP1093311.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Social Policy Research CentreUniversity of New South WalesSydneyAustralia
  2. 2.Centre for Social ImpactSydneyAustralia

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