Work-family state support for the self-employed across Europe

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

16 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: The aim of this article is to map and understand work-family state support for the selfemployed compared to employees across European countries. Design: To map state work-family support policies for the self-employed, an overview of public childcare, maternity, paternity, and parental leave arrangements across European countries is created based on databases, local government websites and local experts’ country notes. Secondary data analyses are conducted in order to compare support for the self-employed to support for employees and across countries. Differences across countries are analysed from a welfare state regime perspective, which explicates assumptions about the role of the government in providing work-family state support and which is often used in research on work-family support for employees. Value: Work-family state support for the growing number of self-employed has never been mapped before, although this is a very topical issue for (European) policy makers. This article offers a starting point to contextualise and understand the way self-employed experience the work-family interface in different country contexts. Findings: Results show that, in general, the self-employed receive less work-family state support than employees or none at all. The extensiveness of work-family state support varies widely across European countries. Patterns of welfare states regimes, which explain variation in work-family support for employees, can also be found in the context of self-employment. Practical implications: Findings result in practical suggestions for policy makers at the European and national level to monitor policy compliance considering maternity leave for the self-employed, to increase childcare support and to rethink the European Entrepreneurship 2020 Action Plan.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)187-208
Number of pages22
JournalJournal of Entrepreneurship and Public Policy
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2015

Research programs

  • EUR ESSB 25


Dive into the research topics of 'Work-family state support for the self-employed across Europe'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this