Public opinion survey on the introduction of motivational paternity leave

RILSA Principal investigator:
PhDr. Věra Kuchařová, CSc.
RILSA Co-investigator:
Kristýna Janurová, MA , Mgr. Jana Paloncyová, Ph.D. , Ing. Sylva Höhne
Grant provider:
Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs of the Czech Republic
Research Institute for Labour and Social Affairs (RILSA)
Project start:
Project end:

The aim of the project was to examine the attitudes of parents in the Czech Republic towards the introduction of the so-called “motivational paternity leave,” which would enable fathers to devote time to full-time childcare, while providing them with salary compensation during this period. The questionnaire examined the preferred design of the leave period with regard to the extent of salary compensation, the form of, and conditions governing, take-up and currently employed practices concerning balancing work and family life, especially with respect to fathers. The sample comprised parents of children up to the age of six. The survey revealed that, while long-established patterns concerning opinions on the ideal form of childcare for small children still prevail, increased support is evident compared to previous research for the idea of sharing full-time childcare between the parents. It was found that financial and employment factors and general attitudes to the father’s and mother’s roles in the family continue to play important roles with respect to childcare. Nevertheless, parents expressed a relatively high level of interest in motivational paternity leave – two-thirds of respondents said they would definitely take advantage and an equal proportion said they would do so under certain circumstances. However, more than half of those respondents who expressed an interest in motivational paternity leave said that they would prefer a system which allowed irregular take-up on certain days, e.g. as “help for the mother in case of need”. The main factor in terms of the decision-making process concerning whether or not to take up paternity leave was the level of salary compensation. Those respondents who declared that they would not consider taking up motivational paternity leave were mostly concerned about the loss of the father’s employment position or salary; however, they also frequently expressed the opinion that mothers were more suited to taking care of small children.

KUCHAŘOVÁ, Věra – PEYCHLOVÁ, Kristýna, 2016. Research on parents’ interest in motivational paternity leave. Praha: RILSA. (only in CZE)