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Intra-metropolitan spatial patterns of female labor force participation and commute times in Tokyo

Mizuki Kawabata and Yukiko Abe

Regional Science and Urban Economics, 2018, vol. 68, issue C, 291-303

Abstract: We explore intra-metropolitan spatial patterns of female labor force participation, and examine how they relate to commute times in Tokyo. The spatial patterns differ markedly by marital status and the presence of children. For married mothers, the spatial clusters of low participation and regular employment rates are largely located in the inner suburbs, many of which overlap with the spatial clusters of long male commute times. The spatial regression results indicate that for married mothers, a longer commute time is significantly associated with lower participation and regular employment rates, while for unmarried and childless married women, these associations are mostly nonsignificant. Among married mothers, the magnitude of the negative associations is greater for college graduates than for those with a high school education or less, suggesting that highly educated mothers are especially sensitive to commute times. We argue that the spatial transportation constraint intensifies the household division of labor, resulting in unique patterns for married mothers.

Keywords: Female labor force participation; Commute times; Spatial patterns; Spatial statistics; Tokyo (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: J21 R12 C31 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2018
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