Measuring Unpaid Care Work in Labour Force Surveys

Measuring Unpaid Care Work in Labour Force Surveys
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Measuring Unpaid Care Work in Labour Force Surveys

23 Septiembre–25 Octubre 2024
El curso está disponible en English
Presentación del curso

Unpaid care work refers to work - performed without expectation of pay or profit - that is oriented to meeting people's physical, psychological, cognitive, and emotional needs. It sustains individual health and wellbeing and is essential to the functioning of societies everywhere.

Most unpaid care work occurs as own use provision of services (also termed unpaid domestic and care work). It is intra-household and/or intra-familial, undertaken by and for members of the same household or by and for relatives living elsewhere. Not all unpaid care work takes place within household or kin networks. It is also routinely provided within wider communities or networks, via direct- or organization based volunteering.

In recent years, the measurement of unpaid care work has been accorded new priority in official statistics. This has occurred as part of a wider revitalisation of interest in the topic in national and international policy circles. There is growing acknowledgement of the economic contribution of unpaid care work, which, based on conservative estimates, would amount to nine per cent of global GDP4 were it accorded monetary value. Similarly, there is growing recognition of the untenability of a status quo whereby, globally, women and girls contribute over three quarters (76.2 per cent) of the total hours spent daily on unpaid care work, to the detriment of labour force participation, access to formal employment and decent work, and involvement in the wider public sphere.

Since 2015, the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) have mandated countries to produce statistics on the "proportion of time spent on unpaid domestic and care work, by sex, age and location" (SDG indicator 5.4.1), while also recognising a central role for volunteer work in the realisation of the wider 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda. Nationally, data on unpaid care work has relevance for a wide range of public policy areas, especially when collected alongside data on labour force participation and employment. Such data provide for a much fuller treatment of gender-based differences and inequities. They permit a fuller analysis of the contribution of unpaid work to national economies, alongside improved monitoring of transitions in the social organization of care work, from unpaid- to market-based provision (or vice versa). Current international standards for labour statistics provide a strong conceptual framework for the measurement of unpaid care work, and volunteer work more broadly, in labour force surveys. This course will explain and operationalise the current guidelines for the measurement of unpaid care work and volunteer work, and will demonstrate available methods, tools, and practical resources. The ILO Department of Statistics, in collaboration with the ITCILO, is proud to offer the second edition of the online course "Measuring Unpaid Care Work & Volunteering in Labour Force Surveys".

¿Quiénes participan en este curso?

The course targets:

  • Statisticians from national statistical offices; Ministries of labour and other institutions involved in production of work, social, and gender statistics;
  • Governmental agencies responsible for developing and implementing policies addressing unpaid care work/volunteer work, labour-market data analysis and national SDG reporting; ILO Social Partners (employers' and workers organizations);
  • Research and academic institutions; international organizations; development agencies; non-governmental organizations.
  • Employment and development policy analysts from National Statistical Offices.
Learning objectives

The main objective of the course is to “support and guide countries in generating systematic and comparable data on unpaid care work and volunteering via additional modules in labour-force surveys. The course aims to provide participants with the necessary skills to collect, measure, and analyse data to measure unpaid care work and volunteering. Moreover, the course will also emphasize the latest 19th ICLS resolutions concerning the measurement and analysis of unpaid care work and volunteering. “

More specifically, the course aims to:

  • Enhance understanding statistical definitions underpinning the measurement of unpaid care work/volunteer work;
  • Provide insights about the surveys necessary to measure and analyze unpaid care work/volunteer work;
  • Examine how LFS add-on modules can be structured to contribute to the measurement and analysis of unpaid care work/volunteer work;
  • Learn how to address measurement issues related to collecting and analysing data on unpaid care work/volunteer work as LFS add-on modules;

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