Not only the expansion of kindergartens enables women to work more, but also the how, shows a recent study by Eco Austria. Above all, longer opening times are needed.
A lot of money has been invested in the expansion of childcare facilities over the past decades. Nationwide, however, the offer is highly inconsistent: while kindergartens in Vienna are open an average of 11.5 hours a day, in Vorarlberg and Upper Austria it is just eight hours. “An opening time of less than nine hours a day generally does not allow both parents to work full-time,” says Monika Köppl-Turyna, director of the employer-related economic research institute Eco Austria.
Köppl-Turyna and her colleague Nikolaus Graf created a study on the subject. The starting point was the question of how it can be that the massive expansion of childcare in Austria had no significant effect on women’s wages. Köppl-Turyna relies on a recently published study by a research team led by the economist Josef Zweimüller from the University of Zurich. This showed that the pay gap, the so-called gender pay gap, remained the same despite the expansion.