Recognising and rewarding care work: the role of public policies

Care4Care series

Policy Brief

07/09/2022

Care work is already one of the most important forms of human work across the world, and is likely to become even more significant in the coming years.

Yet, it is an area that has been neglected in terms of both academic study and active policy engagement. Even now, despite the continuing pandemic, investment in care continues to be hugely underprovided, especially by governments.

Therefore, this Care4Care Policy Brief Series gives center stage to a long-overseen phenomenon that deserves the fullest political relevance and attention. Prof. Jayati Ghosh identifies common challenges and possible good practices across countries, whilst drawing concrete recommendations to feed into national and EU level policy responses.

What renders the measurement of the care economy and of the extent of care work so challenging? Why is the inclusion of unpaid care work even more difficult? And why is measuring the demand for care close to impossible?

In this article, Professor Jayati Ghosh discusses the complex difficulties in gauging care supply and demand. She exposes the numerous benefits of investment in care – ranging from improving basic infrastructures to significant increases in employment – and addresses the under-provision of care alongside demographic changes. Professor Ghosh argues for public policy to build on the ‘5Rs’ framework as a tool for an effective welfare-state response ensuring decent care provision revolving around the recognition, reduction, redistribution, representation and rewarding of care and care work.

Network
Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung
Initiative for Policy Dialogue
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