The COVID-19 pandemic has increased housework, childcare and home-schooling worldwide. An additional substantial burden has fallen on women, especially in countries where the division of family work within the couple was traditionally unbalanced. Yet the pandemic and subsequent home-working may also represent the opportunity for increasing fathers' involvement in the family, thus rebalancing traditional family arrangements. This effect depends on working arrangements of each partner, i.e., working from home, continue working at the usual workplace or stop working. To understand the impact of COVID-19 on the division of labor within the household in a traditional context and the role of working arrangements, we conduct a survey on a representative sample of Italian working women who are interviewed during the two waves of COVID-19 (April 2020 and November 2020). Our data show that the gender gap in household care related activities increased during the first wave of COVID-19 pandemic, it decreased during the second wave but remained higher than before COVID-19. The time spent on housework, childcare, and supporting distance learning of children by women do not depend on their partners' working arrangements. Conversely, men devote less hours to housework and distance learning when their partners are at home. Interestingly, home-working and/or non-working men spend more hours on family work. However, the increased time spent at home does not seem to lead to a reallocation of couples' roles in housework and children care. Working arrangements are also related to women's feelings of uncertainty, with heterogeneous effects by level of education of women.
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