IKEA is launching an online game to inspire conversations about gender equality in the home
IKEA has always worked to create a better everyday life with the help of good quality home furnishings at a low price. A better everyday life is an equal everyday life. In addition, gender equality at home is crucial for creating gender equality in society. Covid-19 and the requirement to stay at home have put extra focus on the distribution of housework. That is why Ingka Group want to draw attention to and create a discussion about the division of responsibilities at home.
Women still bear the greatest responsibility for work at home. Globally, women perform up to three times more unpaid housework than men do – according to the OECD. That’s why IKEA celebrates International Women’s Day by launching an online game that will help couples have constructive conversations about how they can better share responsibilities at home.
The game, which is called FiftyFifty, has been developed in collaboration with relationship expert Jennie Miller and can be played free of charge via IKEA Instagram Stories in 31 countries. Via a number of questions, the game takes couples on a journey where roles and interactions in their particular home are debunked. The idea is that both players will win by finding solutions to their challenges in everyday life.
FiftyFifty is launched at a time when societal shutdowns underscore questions about life at home. New research on the effects of covid-19 shows that the amount of extra housework during the pandemic has been unequally distributed among women in particular.
– Even without covid-19, the division of housework can be a challenge and create unnecessary stress in a relationship. Now that homework and homeschooling are also being added, the situation may worsen, says Jennie Miller and continues:
– Because women still take care of more of the work at home, this causes stress in many relationships, regardless of how long a couple has been together or where they are in life. FiftyFifty offers a pause button to help all of us, regardless of gender, to reevaluate and restart our lives back home. In many cases, an open and constructive conversation is the first step towards resolving the imbalance, she says.
Cornelia Kaufmann, People & Culture Manager at IKEA Sweden, believes that the unequal division of responsibilities in the home holds women back, both privately and professionally:
– Research shows that women in Sweden before the pandemic performed 35% more unpaid work at home than men. This while men performed 25% more paid work. There are still no Swedish statistics that can show the difference during the ongoing pandemic, but our hope is that our online game can contribute to many people taking the chance to think about how they can distribute the work differently and in a way that suits it. own family and contribute to a more even division of labor, says Cornelia Kaufmann.
IKEA is committed to reducing the gender gap in all parts of its business. Here are some examples of a fairer and more inclusive world for both customers and employees:
• Ingka Group has as many women as men in senior positions.
• By 2022, we will have as many women as men on boards, department stores and other operations.
• We are committed to achieving equal pay for equal work regardless of gender within the entire Ingka Group in 2021.
• In 2018, all 18 Ingka countries within the EU signed their own diversity statutes and thus undertook to work for diversity and equal opportunities in the workplace and in society.
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