WiSE research analyses care economy

06 June 2016

WiSE research analyses care economy

Dr Zofia Łapniewska, GCU Post-Doctoral Research Fellow in the WiSE Research Centre, has contributed to a study which shows that investment into the care economy of 2% of GDP in seven countries would create over 21 million jobs and help countries overcome the twin challenges of ageing populations and economic stagnation.

Economists from the Women’s Budget Group carried out advanced modelling of the employment impact of investing the equivalent of 2% of GDP into the ‘social infrastructure’ of education, health and social care services.

They found that between 59% and 70% of the directly-created jobs would be taken up by women; and the employment multiplier effect from these new jobs would also increase overall male employment, by between 1.4% and 4% in different countries.

The report, released by the International Trade Union Confederation, found a 2% investment would lead to 1.5 million jobs in the UK.

Last week, Dr Łapniewska and Dr Angela O’Hagan contributed to a seminar hosted by the Centre for Gender History at the University of Glasgow, exploring the links between gender, care-provision and inequality, past and present.

Dr Łapniewska presented on ‘Investing in the Care Economy’, drawing on her research on policy developments in Scotland and gender analysis of employment stimulus.

She said: “The Scottish Government has made a commitment to double the expenditure on childcare. Existing studies focus mainly on feasibility and the cost of that promise as well as incentives from the employment of parents. However, investment in the childcare sector also brings employment effects (especially for women) in the care sector such as a direct effect (the number of people employed in the care sector); an indirect effect (increased demand of the care sector’s suppliers) and an induced effect (increased household consumption as a result of higher employment).”

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