The Countries Where Men Do More Around the House

Data show that households in several European countries divide housework up more fairly than those in the U.S. do.

Forget the wage gap for a minute. Let’s talk about the chore gap.

Using data from the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, CNNMoney says there is no developed country where men do more housework than women. But there are a few places that come relatively close to dividing the chores equally, especially if you factor in how much men and women work outside the home. Here are the five countries with the greatest errand equality:

5. Norway. Scandinavian governments have tried to encourage a more equitable division of labor. For instance, new fathers are offered 10 weeks of paternity leave. Norwegian men do 44 percent of the housework — about three hours a day — including looking after the kids.

4. Netherlands. The Dutch are known for a four-day workweek and they take work-life balance pretty seriously. But men still somehow end up doing nearly an hour less of chores per day than women on average — about 3½.

3. Belgium. The men here average 27 hours of paid work per week, and spend 23 hours doing chores. Yet women manage to work 48 minutes more. (Backward, in high heels?)

2. Sweden. About 78 percent of Swedish women have work outside the home, which helps explain why men do 46 percent of the housework. After Iceland, Sweden has the largest share of women in the workforce.

1. Denmark. The average Danish man handles 47 percent of the household chores. He spends 3 hours and 37 minutes per day cooking, cleaning and caring for the family — and if you include paid work, the men put in more hours than Danish women. That’s apparently as close as it gets to equality.

So how does the U.S. stack up? According to the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, we rank No. 14.

Stacy Johnson

It's not the usual blah, blah, blah

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  • Old Highland Guy

    Wait just a minute there. Every country named is in europe. Here, in American, I have to take care of the yard work, all of it. The europeans don’t have yards to take care of. I have to do all the mechanical work on the cars and RV. How many europeans even have an RV to work on, not many, I’ve been there and I know. I also share in the housework, especially the heavier stuff. I clean bathrooms, vaccum, clean windows, etc., ad infinitum. So, do not compare oranges with apples, it does not work too well.
    I am the gardner, mechanic and haus-frau.
    By the way, our friends and family in Scotland, do not allow their men to do housework, it is beneath them.

  • Eddie Lutz

    The top five countries are experiencing the most severe influx of immigrants from female subserviant cultures. Irony? Or an evolutionary rebalancing?

  • Rae

    Women here in the US need to grow some grapes and rationally explain to their men that its not the 1950’s anymore, that we (often) work full time jobs too, and that our time is as equally valuable as theirs. Why should I work the same amount of hours as my husband, yet do all the cooking, cleaning, and laundry? We take turns doing chores, have our own laundry baskets, and have our home running efficiently. Again, its not the 1950’s anymore, the word female is not a synonym to housewife or slave!!

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