OECD: Work – should come first even if it means less spare time

In the World Values Survey, a series of questions on attitude towards work such below was asked:

Attitude towards Work: Work should come first even if it means less spare time

There are 5 categorical answers: “strongly agree”, “agree”, “neither agree nor disagree”, “disagree” and “disagree strongly”. Selected OECD countries’s result is shown in 3 forms: a) the percentage (%) of people strongly agree with the statement, b) the percentage (%) of people strongly disagree with the statement, and c) mean score of the statement, by assigning value 5 for ”strongly agree”, 4 on “agree”, 3 for “neither agree nor disagree”, 2 for “disagree” and 1 for “strongly disagree”. The graphs depicted the result are shown as below:

a) the percentage (%) of people strongly agree with the statement: “Work should come first even if it means less spare time”

38.4% Hungarian, 33.4% South African, 25.1% Turkish, and 18.4% Luxembourger strongly agree that work should come first even if it means less spare time. On the other hand, relatively richer countries like Netherlands (3.9%), UK (4.0%), Iceland (5.3%) and Ireland (6.7%) would agree with the statement. I guess they value spare time more than work itself.

b) the percentage (%) of people strongly disagree with the statement: “Work should come first even if it means less spare time”

So, 23.0% of French, 18.6% Belgian, 15.3% Luxembourger and 12.9% Dutch strongly disagree with the statement. On the other hand, only 1.1% South African, 1.8% Hungarian, 2.3% Turkish and 3.5% Portugese would strongly disgaree with the statement.

c) Overall mean score of the statement. 5 for “strongly agree” and 1 for “strongly disagree”

Overall, the more developed/higher income countries like Netherlands, UK, Sweden, France, Belgium and Iceland have the general opinion shift towards disgreeing that work should come first even if it means less spare time. On the other hand, lower income countries like Hungary, South Africa, Turkey and Italy would definitely view work as more important or valuable compared to spare time.  

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