December 10, 2003
Among 12 developed countries, the United States and Denmark had the highest women’s employment-population ratios in 2001—for both countries, the ratio was 57.0 percent.
The employment-population ratios in Sweden (56.8 percent) and Canada (56.2 percent) were nearly as high as in the U.S. and Denmark. Spain and Italy had the lowest ratios, with only one-third of all women employed in 2001.
Of the 12 countries in the chart, the Netherlands had the largest increase in the women’s employment-population ratio in the past two decades, from 31.0 percent in 1980 to 54.0 percent in 2001. This increase is attributable primarily to growth in part-time employment for women in the Netherlands.
These data are from the BLS Foreign Labor Statistics program. For more information, see "Families and work in transition in 12 countries, 1980–2001," by Gary Martin and Vladimir Kats, Monthly Labor Review, September 2003.
Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, The Economics Daily, Employment-population ratios of women in 12 countries on the Internet at http://www.bls.gov/opub/ted/2003/dec/wk2/art03.htm (visited November 26, 2015).
Fifty years of looking at changes in peoples lives
Longitudinal surveys help us understand long-term changes, such as how events that happened when a person was in high school affect labor market success as an adult.