Centre for Vocational Education Research LSE RSS Email Facebook Twitter


CentrePiece article
Economics of a good night's sleep
Joan Costa-Font and Sarah Flèche
July 2017
Paper No' CEPCP506:
Full Paper (pdf)

CentrePiece 22 (2) Summer 2017

JEL Classification: J13; J22; I18; J28

Tags: child sleep; sleep; maternal employment; working hours; job satisfaction

Parents whose sleep quality is reduced by young children waking them in the night are less likely to work, work shorter hours and/or earn less than otherwise similar people who enjoy a good night’s sleep. The negative labour market effects of sleep disruption caused by children are particularly strong for low-skilled mothers. These are among the findings of research by Joan Costa-i-Font and Sarah Flèche, which uses data on 14,000 families in and around the city of Bristol in the UK to investigate the link between mothers’ employment outcomes and their quality of sleep, measured by how much they are woken by their children at night. The researchers note that before now, the effects of sleep deprivation on economic activity have received surprisingly scant attention.

This article summarises ‘Parental Sleep and Employment: Evidence from a British Cohort Study’ by Joan Costa-i-Font and Sarah Flèche, CEP Discussion Paper No 1467.