• A
  • A
  • A
  • ABC
  • ABC
  • ABC
  • А
  • А
  • А
  • А
  • А
Regular version of the site

Working paper

Fathers’ Involvement in Childcare, Children’s Education and Housework During the COVID-19 Lockdown

OSF Preprints. OSF, 2021
The COVID-19 pandemic has transformed daily life across the world and affected multiple social institutions. It may also have modified parents’ gendered division of labour. Current research on family functioning during the pandemic has provided mixed evidence on the influence of at-home work and at-home schooling on mothers’ and fathers’ involvement in childcare, child’s education and housework. In this paper, we use data from 1359 Russian mothers to study whether fathers' participation in these activities was influenced by the increased need for parental help in schooling and more opportunities for help due to remote work during the lockdown. We find that fathers’ involvement was higher if they worked remotely during the lockdown and if the child needed much additional help with schooling after school closures. These results hold true even after controlling for fathers’ pre-pandemic involvement. In line with conditional fatherhood theory, mothers’ engagement with remote schooling was almost unrelated to their employment status and work arrangement. Overall, our evidence supports the ‘needs exposure’ hypothesis that additional family needs in combination with switching to remote work can increase fathers’ involvement. However, evaluating the duration of these changes and their long-term influence on families’ functioning would require further research.