How do we spend or share time? Time might be dedicated to ‘harmful’ industrial production, to conspicuous consumption, or to democracy and convivial exchanges. The time dimension questions the concept of work, the division of labour and the way we spend our free time. In the context of degrowth the time dimension calls for work-sharing, either paid or unpaid, earlier retirement, longer holidays, sharing at the shorter and transforming at the longer term.
Some of the possible proposals in this field, developed at the Second International Conference on Degrowth (Barcelona 2010) are illustrated below:
> Limits to paid working hours are needed, and their concrete level has to be researched and established in a democratic debate.
> A progressive income tax is needed to reduce inequality as well income ceiling.
> Incentives are needed to encourage companies to enable work sharing and part-time work (including provision of accessible childcare).
> Unpaid work needs to be shared too.
> Research is needed to define work and its aim in a degrowth society, as well as the contribution of unpaid, household/community work to current economy.
Link to conference website: Work Sharing