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Knowledge hub: The Nordic Gender Effect at Work

sovande med barn
Valokuvaaja
Moa Karlberg
Investments in gender equality in the labour market have made the Nordic region one of the most prosperous areas of the world.
This series of briefs shares the true story of how investments in gender equality foster employment, family wellbeing and growth.
Let it be a a practical tool to bring about change, all over the world!

1. Subsidised childcare boosts economic growth

The introduction of quality, affordable childcare is a key reason so many women are in paid employment in the Nordic countries. A distinctive feature of Nordic childcare is that it is available to all children – regardless of family structure, finances and parents’employment. Childcare in the Nordic region is provided by well-trained staff and characterised by highly professional care and learning environments.

Promoting gender equality at work is not only the right thing to do, but the smart thing to do

2. Shared leave promotes gender equality

Both mothers and fathers are entitled to paid parental leave in the Nordic countries. In order to promote and facilitate gender equality at home and in the labour market, efforts have been made at the political level to encourage parents to divide the leave time equally. These efforts have yielded results: Nordic fathers take more parental leave than fathers anywhere else in the world.

3. Equal representation improves profit

Equal opportunities in the workplace have been high on the Nordic political agenda since the 1970s. Many initiatives have been launched to ensure women and men’s equal opportunities at work and for leadership at all levels. Today the Nordic region stands tall in international rankings on gender equality at work.

4. Flexibility makes better work-life balance

Flexible work arrangements enable parents to successfully combine work and family life. The Nordic countries have a strong tradition of collective bargaining, which has resulted in relatively good working conditions, flexible working hours and the right to paid vacation. Nordic companies offer more flexible working hours than anywhere else in Europe.

5. The full and true story

This publication contains all the four briefs and a fifth part that places gender equality policy in a wider historical context – the growth of the welfare state and the Nordic labour market model. The Nordic Gender Effect at Work shares the true story of how Nordic investments in gender equality foster employment, family wellbeing and growth.

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