Employment Consequences of Providing Unpaid Caregiving

Tuesday 2 July 2024, 2:30 pm
PhD candidate
K. Raiber
prof. dr. C.M.C. Verbakel, prof. dr. M. van Hees
dr. M. Visser

In today's society, many people either provide care for a loved one with health issues or know someone who is. This unpaid care takes various forms, from emotional support for a grandmother to assisting your partner with daily tasks after surgery. As the population ages, the need for such caregiving is expected to increase, potentially affecting various aspects of caregivers' lives. My sociological research focuses on how caring for a friend or family member with health issues impacts a person's employment. Analyzing survey data over multiple years, I found that combining care and paid work is not always possible, especially when caring for more hours. Some caregivers had to reduce working hours or stopped working altogether, and only a few changed their jobs or became self-employed. Caregivers earned less on average compared to similar non-caregivers and were comparably less satisfied with their work. Interestingly, men who cared were able to improve their wages when dedicating more time to caregiving or after stopping to care. However, overall, the impact of caregiving on paid work was negative, which is expected to worsen with aging populations and increased caregiving needs in the future.

Klara Raiber obtained a Bachelor's degree in Social Science from Leibniz University Hannover in 2017 and a Master's in Sociology from the University of Mannheim in 2019. Her PhD was conducted at the Department of Sociology at Radboud University in Nijmegen as part of the Interuniversity Center for Social Science Theory and Methodology (ICS) and the SCOOP Research and Training Center supervised by Ellen Verbakel, Mark Visser, and Martin van Hees. From September to November 2022, she was a visiting scholar at the Center for Population Change and the Department of Gerontology at the University of Southampton, collaborating with Maria Evandrou and Jane Falkingham. Klara chaired the Halkes Women+ Faculty network in 2021 and 2022 and serves as a staff representative of the Gender & Sexuality Alliance at Radboud. In 2023, Klara received the Christine Mohrmann Stipend. Since March 2024, she is an assistant professor of sociology at Radboud University.