Making Invisible Work More Visible: Gender and Time Use Surveys with a Focus in the Pacific and Unpaid Care Work

Margaret Mohammed

This report discusses how time use studies (TUS) have been used to identify the type and extent of women’s work, specifically their unpaid caring work. Section one gives a brief overview of the history and nature of time use. Section two outlines the various methods used, commenting on their respective strengths and weaknesses. Section three focuses on time use studies in the Pacific. Examples found of work done in the Pacific, from the 1970s to the present, are outlined and key findings reported. There is a scarcity of TUS in the Pacific and no national study has been done, either as a stand alone or as a satellite survey. Those that have been done, or data which has been taken from other surveys, such as the Household Income and Expenditure Survey (HIES), show similar patterns to other developing countries – women do most of the unpaid work, especially domestic work. Section four focuses on the importance of care work, specifically on women and men’s unpaid work caring for people with the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) or the acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS). Again, there is lack of Pacific studies in this area. Section five provides a series of recommendations for advancing the use and application of findings of time use surveys to policy, planning, and budgeting in the Pacific Island countries. The report concludes that women’s unpaid work caring for others will increase as the prevalence of HIV increases in the Pacific.

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UN/IGO Document
Submitted by Toksave
March 23, 2021
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