Outsourcing child care, home cleaning and meal preparation

J.R. Cornelisse-Vermaat, J.A.C. van Ophem, G. Antonides, H. Maassen van den Brink

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5 Citations (Scopus)


In this paper, the outsourcing of child care, home cleaning and meal preparation is analysed by means of a socio-economic model that incorporates household-economic, life cycle, lifestyle and health variables. The data (n¿=¿700) were collected during a telephone survey in the Netherlands. About 10% of the households did not use any of the three outsourcing types. About 70 to 90% of households outsourced meal preparation at least once per month. In each household life cycle stage, the average monthly expenditures on outsourcing meal preparation were the highest of the three outsourcing categories. Factors affecting expenditures were generally the same for each type of outsourcing studied. In general, household economic variables including wage and working hours were unimportant in explaining the incidence and expenditures of outsourcing. The same holds for self-reported health. All expenditure types were affected by life cycle variables. There was an indication that a traditional lifestyle and traditional family type affected outsourcing expenditures negatively. Education appeared as an important factor: regardless of gender, both medium- and higher-educated people were more inclined to spend money on outsourcing than the lower educated. Especially, people younger than 44 years outsourced meal preparation. Outsourcing was neither restricted to nor especially practised by couples.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)530-537
JournalInternational Journal of Consumer Studies
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2013


  • service economy
  • time
  • allocation
  • housework
  • labor
  • work
  • expenditures
  • food


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