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 Research Projects at the MPIfG

The Regulation of Paid Domestic Work

Virginia Kimey Pflücke


 
Domestic work remains central to the division of the private and public spheres. While the sexual division of labor and the lack of recognition given to unpaid domestic work have been studied extensively over the past forty years, paid domestic work has historically received little attention. This is surprising as paid domestic work is still highly gendered and informal: 90 percent of domestic workers worldwide are women, often migrants, and therefore typical labor market "outsiders." Only after the millennium did the regulation of paid domestic work receive attention, but strong international differences exist. While some countries (e.g. Uruguay) are developing policies and policy instruments to confront the lack of regulation, paid domestic work remains highly unregulated in other countries (e.g. Spain). Actors such as unions, employers, and governments as well as social movements and international organizations (e.g. ILO) have conflicting interests and pursue different ideas. This dissertation project uses a comparative case study of Spain and Uruguay to examine how the differences in national regulations on paid domestic work can be explained. Project duration: October 2013 to September 2017.
 

 
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