University of Tokyo

Survey Number 0584
Survey Title Questionnaire Survey on Labor Union Gender, 2004
Depositor Ochanomizu University/ Research Institute for Advancement of Living Standards
(Former Name:Research Institute for Advancement of Living Standards)
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Educational Purpose Available for both research and instructional purposes.
Period of Data Use Permission One year
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Nesstar Not available
Summary This study is one of four projects of Ochanomizu University COE program, “Frontiers in gender studies” (F-GENS) and was conducted as part of the research on “Declining birthrate and the economy,” the theme of Project B.

The purpose of this study is, first, to obtain basic information to prepare a “gender index” for labor unions (here broadly interpreted as an index for measuring the state of gender equality). This gender index aims to objectively/quantitatively identify labor union members’ attitudes to and union actions toward gender equality in the workplace and union activity. If a suitable index can be developed, it will contribute to labor unions further eliminating commonplace gender inequality in the business realm.

Second, this survey intends to clarify the effect of gender equality at home on gender equality in the workplace.

Third, this survey provides critical decision-making material for future union activities, by identifying the conditions affecting (or not affecting) “gender equality in labor unions” through female labor union activity.

In short, this survey’s purpose is to identify how female participation in labor decision-making is related to gender equality for both men and women at home and in the workplace.

The following five points are the pillars of the survey items established in accordance with the above survey objectives.

(1) State of and attitudes to gender inequality in the workplace (administrative authority, skill level, gender-based work segregation, working hours)
(2) Treatment in the workplace and gender-based differences (wages, evaluation systems)
(3) State of gender equality at home (housework, childrearing, long-term care, etc.)
(4) Factors influencing attitudes to gender
(5) Connection between leaders and gender equality in labor unions

Furthermore, this survey is a questionnaire survey conducted on male and female staff/employees through local branches of the Japanese Trade Union Confederation (RENGO), in cooperation with Rengo Research Institute for Advancement of Living Standards (RENGO-RIALS).

Thus the distinguishing feature of the survey subjects is that they include more large companies. Therefore, when using the data from this union survey for analysis, it is important to keep in mind that it is focused on fairly prosperous regular employees affiliated with large Japanese companies.
Data Type quantitative research
quantitative research: micro data
Universe Male and female union members
Unit of Observation Individual
Sample Size Number of questionnaires distributed: 4,230 people, number of responses: 2,024 people, response rate: 47.8%
Date of Collection
Time Period
Spatial Unit Japan (see “Sampling Procedure” for details)
Sampling Procedure Questionnaires were distributed through local branches of the Japanese Trade Union Confederation (RENGO), in cooperation with Rengo Research Institute for Advancement of Living Standards (RENGO-RIALS).

Questionnaires were distributed to a total of 4,000 men and women (2,000 men, 2,000 women) with a target response rate of 50% and a total of 2,000 responses expected men and women combined.

20 local RENGO branches were selected as survey subjects from among 36 prefectural branches. Screening criteria was entrusted to RENGO-RIALS to avoid regional bias and weighting survey respondents toward specific regions.

In selecting survey subjects, balancing of regional characteristics, gender, age, marital status, industry, and occupation was taken into account, and the plan was made to make it a nationwide basis and to identify the same number of male and female union members.
Mode of Data Collection Questionnaires were distributed by first sending the target number of questionnaires together with a request form to local RENGO union officers from RENGO-RIALS. Local RENGO branches distributed questionnaires for which requests were received to relevant staff/employees on an individual basis.

Questionnaire collection was done by having each subject respondent directly place the questionnaire in an enclosed return envelope and then mailing them to RENGO-RIALS.

At Research Institute for Advancement of Living Standards, the results were compiled into simple summary of results and returned to this study group.
Investigator Ochanomizu University/Research Institute for Advancement of Living Standards
Sponsors (Funds)
Related Publications (by the Investigator) Please refer to the abstract in Japanese.
Related Publications (based on Secondary Analysis) List of related publications (based on Secondary Analysis)
Documentation [Questionnaire]
Major Survey Items (1) Face items
Main industry of affiliated company/workplace,size of employing company by number of regular employees,size of affiliated workplace/factory by total number of employees,position in the union,specialized/non-specialized,total length of experience as an officer/committee member,gender,age,area of residence,years of employment at current company,highest level of educational attainment,employment category,mode of work,rank at work, marital status,number of cohabitants, household family members,number of non-cohabitating children,development stages of oldest/youngest children,spouse’s or partner’s age/highest level of educational attainment/mode of work

(2) Workplace
Current job,job fields experienced,number of regular employees at workplace (number of women among them)/number of non-regular employees (number of women among them),number of regular employees (number of women among them)/number of non-regular employees (including number of women) doing the same work,promotion prospects,way of moving work forward,nature of work,scheduled working hours not including overtime per day,average number of workdays per week,average number of days with overtime per month,average number of overtime hours per month,time respondent comes to work/goes home,time spouse/partner goes to work/comes home,one-way commuting time,non-working hour meetings,whether or not respondent has taken paid leave in the past year,number of paid-leave days given in the last fiscal year,number of paid-leave days taken in the last fiscal year,paid leave taken for personal reasons,presence of business trips,number of transfers,number of job relocations with/without a change in area of residence, presence of performance reviews (individual assessment),information that respondent is provided with/wants to be provided with concerning performance reviews (individual assessment), thoughts on performance reviews,total amount of taxable annual wages last year

(3) Family life
Experience with family/relatives requiring long-term care, care recipient and main care provider, person doing housework, degree of satisfaction with the division of housework with spouse/partner, frequency of family dinners, state of using company’s childcare support systems, childcare support systems used, person who takes care of children when they fall ill, mother’s employment and childcare when first child is less than 1 year of age and between ages 1 and 3, person who drops off and picks up children from nursery school/kindergarten, respondent’s and spouse’s work style before children start school (level of priority given to work and childrearing)

(4) Attitude to work and family life
Gender inequality at current workplace,reasons that there are not many females in managerial positions,thoughts on wage disparities between regular employees and part-timers doing the same job,thoughts on promoting policies in Japan to eliminate disparities in wages and treatment between regular employees and part-timers,reasons that the percentage of males taking parental leave is law,thoughts on union policy on wage fund allocation,thoughts on wages/working hours/state of income security during parental leave for households with children,issues that labor unions should address to achieve work-life balance for men and women and workplace gender equality

(5) Labor union activity
Things needed for female participation in union institutional operation, hours spent on union activities per week, selection method when respondent became a union official,when union activities and family life/professional work/leisure activities overlap,whether or not any stress on family exists owing to union activity/the details thereof, benefits of union activity
Date of Release
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Topics in SSJDA Employment/Labor
Version 2008/10/27 :
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