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Department of Economics, Stockholm University Research Papers in Economics, Department of Economics, Stockholm University

No 2006:9:
Maternal Addiction to Parental Leave

Per Engström (), Ann-Sofie Kolm () and Che-Yuan Liang ()

Abstract: The increased demand for a more equal parental sharing of the responsibilities for children has led many countries to reconstruct their parental leave systems so to provide stronger incentives for fathers to participate in childcare. Father’s quotas are becoming widely spread across Europe. This paper provides arguments for why it may be welfare improving for both parents to increase the father’s share of the family’s parental leave time. However, regulations in terms of father’s quotas may not be optimal since it fails to recognise potentially heterogenous preferences. Instead, self-commitment devices should be provided in order to prevent mothers from taking too large share of the family’s leave time.

Keywords: Parental leave; Hyperbolic discounting; Addiction; (follow links to similar papers)

JEL-Codes: D10; J13; J16; J22; (follow links to similar papers)

18 pages, December 3, 2006

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