Involuntary part-time employment rate
by country (2008Q2, 2013Q2, 2017Q2)
Developments in part-time work have not been uniform across the EU. Despite the average part-time rate remaining relatively stable between 2013 and 2017 at the EU28 level, in 13 countries it increased, while declining in another 13 (Figure 2.11). The biggest increases were noted in Austria (+2.2pp), followed by Greece and Belgium. Interestingly, in the past three years the part-time rate increased more among men than women in the EU.
This pattern was particularly visible in the Netherlands, Germany, Denmark, Belgium, Sweden, Luxembourg, France and Cyprus. Nevertheless, part-time employment remains a female-dominated form of work, raising concerns about women’s financial dependence within households, an unequal division of unpaid work, and a life-long penalty in pensions. The Netherlands are an outlier with by far the highest part-time employment rate in the EU: 27% among men and a striking 76% among women.
However, only about one in ten workers would rather have a full-time job in this country (Figure 2.12). This contrasts with a much higher incidence of involuntary part-time work in Greece (72%), Cyprus, Italy or Spain. This highlights the inherently different labour market position of atypical workers in the southern countries.