In Switzerland, 60 per cent of unpaid work is carried out by women

By Ann Kernahan, December 2022

Swiss people did unpaid work worth CHF 434 billion in 2020. Of this amount, 60 per cent is accounted for by women. Unpaid work includes housework and gardening, for example, as well as caring for children and dependants, reports

A total of 9.8 billion hours of unpaid work were performed in Switzerland in 2020, according to the published household production report of the Federal Statistical Office (BFS). By comparison, the population worked 7.6 billion hours for some pay.

The BFS report said that while women did 60 per cent of unpaid work, 61 per cent of paid work was done by men. However, there has been a steady equalisation over the past 20 years. In 1997, 67 per cent of unpaid work was still carried out by women.

However, the average time spent per week on unpaid work has increased over the decade from 27.9 to 28.7 hours for women and from 16.2 to 19.1 hours for men.

To estimate the monetary value of unpaid work, it was calculated how much households would have to pay a person recruited through the market to do this work. Average labour costs for comparable occupational groups were used as comparative indicators.