Monday, 24 December 2018

How Do Household Tasks Shape Employment Contracts? The Provision of Care in Portugal

Fátima Suleman & Abdul Suleman Published online: 08 Nov 2018 Download citation Full Article Figures & data References Supplemental Citations Metrics Reprints & Permissions Get access ABSTRACT This study illustrates the complexities involved in outsourcing domestic work to the market. It draws on an original dataset of paid domestic workers in Portugal to examine how specific tasks interact with and explain contractual arrangements. A fuzzy cluster analysis categorizes paid domestic workers into caregivers and cleaners; however, a great degree of overlap implies that caring also entails cleaning tasks necessary for the care receiver’s well-being. A subsequent Tobit regression analysis shows that caregivers have more formal and stable contracts but earn lower wages and have longer working hours relative to cleaners. The study finds a segmentation of national origin and that some migrants are at a disadvantage in care work. The study also examines how employers deal with the idiosyncrasies of domestic work such as navigating trust-related issues. KEYWORDS: Paid domestic work, caregivers, contractual arrangements, fuzzy clustering, Tobit regression JEL Codes: J41, J42, J81 Additional information Author information Fátima Suleman Fátima Suleman is Professor at Instituto Universitário de Lisboa (ISCTE-IUL) and Senior Researcher at Centre for Socioeconomic and Territorial Studies (DINAMIA’CET), Lisbon, Portugal. She received her PhD in economics from ISCTE-IUL, Portugal and University of Bourgogne, France. Her research interests are related to wage and employment flexibility in the labor market. She has recently published in Cambridge Journal of Economics, Scottish Journal of Political Economy, and The Manchester School. Abdul Suleman Abdul Suleman is Professor at Instituto Universitário de Lisboa (ISCTE-IUL) and Senior Researcher at Business Research Unit (BRU), Lisbon, Portugal. He received his PhD in quantitative methods from ISCTE-IUL, Portugal. His research interests focus on multivariate analysis statistical tools, especially fuzzy clustering. He has recently published in Fuzzy Sets and Systems, Pattern Recognition Letters, and Journal of Applied Statistics. Funding This work was supported by Fundação para a Ciência e a Tecnologia: grant number UID/GES/00315/2013.