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Working Hard? Hardly Working

The current issue of National Geographic Magazine features an interesting one-page piece entitled “A Work-Weary World.” The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development tracked the annual hours worked around the world in 2003 and came up with some interesting findings:

  • South Korea, 2,390
  • Czech Republic, 1,972
  • Poland, 1,956
  • Greece, 1,938
  • Mexico, 1,857
  • Slovakia, 1,814
  • Australia, 1,814
  • New Zealand, 1,813
  • Japan, 1,801
  • Spain, 1,800
  • United States, 1,792
  • Hungary, 1,777
  • Canada, 1,718
  • Finland, 1,713
  • Portugal, 1,676
  • United Kingdom, 1,673
  • Ireland, 1,613
  • Italy, 1,591
  • Sweden, 1,564
  • Austria, 1,550
  • Belgium, 1,542
  • Denmark, 1,475
  • Germany, 1,446
  • France, 1,431
  • Netherlands, 1,354
  • Norway 1,337

While the full data set doesn’t appear to be easily available online, you can access a description of the study’s sources and a report on year-to-year percentage changes. Michael Boyer’s report on the study indicates that “once a nation cultivates wealth, work hours tend to drop.”

HR