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Gender Gaps in Care Work: Evidences from Argentina, Chile, Spain and Uruguay

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This paper is a comparative analysis of the gender gaps in the non-paid domestic and care work (NPDCW) undertaken in homes in Argentina, Chile, Spain and Uruguay. The explanatory factors of this gap in two-income households and their magnitude and impact on the distribution of NPDCW are analyzed using data from national time use surveys. The weakness of micro-sociological approaches and the variables related to relative resources and time availability is demonstrated using the estimation of a regression model, while the importance of approximations of gender roles and analyses that incorporate macro-sociological factors is shown. Furthermore, the findings show that NPDCW is done by women in 70% of cases with women’s incomes and time availability among the individual variables that drive change within the couple. The results show that the equalizing effects of time availability and gender ideology are stronger for women in more egalitarian countries; women in less egalitarian countries benefit less from their individual-level assets. Additional comparative analysis shows that other macro-level factors (economic development, female labor-force participation, gender norms and welfare systems) may also influence the division of this work. The results suggest that changes in individual-level factors alone may not be enough to achieve an equal division of labor in the household without a parallel reduction in macro-level gender inequality.

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  1. Times of paid work and NPDCW performed by other household members are excluded.


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Correspondence to Màrius Domínguez-Amorós.

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This article was compiled in the context of the INCASI Network, a European project that has received funding from the European Union H2020 research program, Marie Skłodowska-Curie GA No. 691004, coordinated by Dr. Pedro López-Roldán. The article reflects the opinion of the authors and the Agency is not responsible for the use that may be made of the information it contains.


Appendix 1

Partials plots. Dependent variable by independent variables.

figure a

Appendix 2 Normality tests and normal probability plots (Q’Q)


Kolmogorov–Smirnov test

Age female


Age male


Hours paid work female


Hours paid work male


Nª minors in household


Total hours of NPDCW


  1. ***P-value < 0.01
  2. Sample: households made up of employed couples, who receive a wage for this work
  3. Source: Author’s own elaboration based on the Time Use Survey for Spain, INE (2010); the Non-Paid Work Survey for Argentina, INDEC (2013); the Time Use Survey for Chile, INE (2015) and the Time Use Survey for Uruguay (2013)
figure b

Appendix 3 Residuals analysis.

figure c

Partial graphics. Scatterplots of the residuals of each independent variable and the residuals of the dependent variable.

figure d
figure e

Appendix 4 VIF multiclolinearity diagnostics. Gender gaps in NPDCW



Variance inflation factor




Age female



Income female (log.)



Hours paid work female



Hours paid work male



Educat. level male basic



Educat. level male medium



Type of household child 0–4



Type of household child 5–9



Type of household child 10–19



Type of household child + 19



Socioprofessional female category 1



Socioprofessional male category 4



Socioprofessional y male category 1



Paid DCW



Contribution to the household income female > male



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Domínguez-Amorós, M., Batthyány, K. & Scavino, S. Gender Gaps in Care Work: Evidences from Argentina, Chile, Spain and Uruguay. Soc Indic Res 154, 969–998 (2021).

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