Trends on working hours, wealth, and parenting

Our World in Data had a series of interesting charts recently on working hours, wealth, and parenting.

The first chart looks at “Annual working hours” per worker. In wealthy countries, the average number of hours in a work week have gone from ~60 hours to ~35 hours in the past 100 years (assuming 3-4 weeks of vacation).

With the exception of the United States, vacation days in these countries have gone up over time. It is interesting to see the US lose ground in the 1990s.

Next, we look at the relationship between the wealth of a country and working hours. This is as expected – wealth correlates with fewer working hours. The exceptions are rich Asian countries (Singapore, South Korea, etc.). Culture matters too.

The more the labor productivity, the less workers can afford to work.

And, finally, we have a chart that looks at time parents spend with their kids. The trend is clear.

In sum, as countries got wealthier thanks to increased labor productivity, everyone began working less. They used this time to spend more time with their kids.

A fascinating collection of charts. Thank you, Our World in Data team, for your continued good work in improving our understanding of the world using data.

Source posts: 1, 2, 3