Part-time Work: What’s at Stake?

International Stakeholder Event


On 12 February the International Stakeholder Event Part-time Work: What’s at Stake? will take place. Twenty years ago, the Dutch part-time model gained an international reputation as a way of facilitating mothers’ (sometimes marginal) employment. Despite continued popular preferences for short working weeks and soaring employment levels of Dutch mothers, part- time work is now also viewed as a crucial factor inhibiting improvements in gender equality and diversity more broadly. The recent resurgence in scientific interest in part-time work demonstrates gaps in our understanding of the persistent nature of part-time work and its effects.

The urgency for academic/non-academic, interdisciplinary cooperation across national borders is great. Multiple countries within and outside Europe struggle with the gendered and unequal nature of part-time work and its effects. Crucially, part-time work is no longer exclusively a mother’s issue, as young men, childless women, low skilled and ethnic minority workers are regularly found in increasingly precarious part-time work positions. The EU’s Social Pillar and the Gender Equality Strategy to be launched in March emphasize the need to improve women’s economic independence, the reconciliation of work and family life, and to halt labour market polarization.


The aim of this stakeholder event on 12 February 2021 is to bring together key national and international researchers and stakeholders with an interest in part-time work, inequality, and/or the wellbeing of part-time workers, to discuss current pressing issues from academic and societal perspectives, as well as identify avenues for future research and stakeholder engagement in the research process. While the Netherlands might be known for its part-time model, the issue of part-time work takes on different forms in different national, organizational, and sectoral contexts. What urgent issues do part-time workers face in these varying national, organizational, and sectoral contexts? What steps can we take, in research and practice, to address these issues? 

The event will take place fully online, with an interactive program allowing for active participation from all attendees. To kick-off the event, we offer key perspectives from European stakeholders tackling urgent issues in part-time work. Following, attendees can choose to participate in one of the interactive breakout sessions involving stakeholders and academics to map the experiences, representations and consequences of part-time employment for different groups of workers. Each breakout session will develop a common vision on key issues facing their group of workers and steps needed to address the issues in practice and/or gaps in our knowledge.

This event is organized by Dr. Mara Yerkes (Utrecht University) and Dr. Janna Besamusca (University of Amsterdam) and is sponsored by the UU Gender and Diversity Hub and the European Research Council (ERC) project CAPABLE. The chair of the event is Desiree Hoving, science journalist and public events speaker. Key contributions will be provided, among others, by Lesia Radelicki (European Commission Cabinet of Commissioner for Equality), Heidi Nicolaisen and Hanne Kavli (The Fafo Institute for Labour and Social Research, Norway), Esther Lynch (European Trade Union Confederation), Wieteke Graven (Het Potentieel Pakken, Dutch foundation), and Susan Veenhoff, director of Vierstroom ZorgThuis (Dutch health care sector).

Poster Part-time Work: What's at Stake?
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End date and time
This event will take place fully online

Registration is open to all interested academics (register here) and professional stakeholders (register here). To participate, please register by filling out the form in the registration portal before 5 February. A few days before the event, the link to the Microsoft Teams environment will be sent to your email address. If you have registered but are unable to join, please send an email to to cancel your attendance. Please do not hesitate to contact us if you have any further questions (