Policy Brief

  • Collective findings of 22 studies from low- and middle-income countries provide strong evidence that increasing access to childcare can improve maternal labor market outcomes.

  • Childcare hours that accommodate women’s work schedules and the location of the childcare center are important features for maximizing mothers’ labor force participation.

  • Mothers who simultaneously work and childmind (as in rural settings and informal self-employment) benefit from childcare in the form of improved productivity.

  • Provision of childcare may need to be complemented with other policy tools (e.g., longer parental leave) to ensure attachment to labor market when children are very young.

  • Lack of job opportunities or lack of skills that match available work opportunities may prevent women from utilizing available childcare services.

CSIS Commentary [Bahasa Indonesia]

  • 83% of respondents report increase in Intimate Partner Violence in their communities due to COVID-19

  • Household food insecurity is among the strongest predictors of exposure to gender-based violence

  • Women’s access to jobs protects them from increase in exposure to gender-based violence due to COVID-19

  • Only about 1 in 10 Indonesians aged 18 to 40 and interested in migrating abroad know the requirements for documented migration.

  • Gender differences in the propensity to become undocumented migrants may be driven by time constraints due to higher care burden women face

  • An additional public preschool per 1,000 children raises the employment of mothers of eligible-aged children by 6.9 percentage points, an increase of about 13%.

  • Availability of public preschools also has positive, but smaller effects on mothers with children younger than eligible age. Women with younger children may take into account future childcare options when making decisions about work.

  • Private preschools, which cost more on average and have greater variability in terms of quality compared to public preschools, have no impact on women’s employment.

[Bahasa Indonesia]

  • Low female labor force participation is linked with unsatisfied childcare needs.

  • Urban women without access to informal childcare forego approximately US$1,300 in earnings due to prolonged absence from the labor market.

  • After childbirth, women without access to informal childcare are more likely to switch into, and remain in, unpaid family work.

  • For women who return to work, childcare constraints are associated with a switch into less lucrative occupations.