Future of Work

This is how shorter working hours can affect your productivity

Japan, a country long known for its long working hours and high levels of job security, offers an ideal area for the study. Image: Unsplash/Wes Hicks

Ruo Shangguan

Adjunct Researcher, Institute for Empirical Research in Organizational Economics, Waseda University

Jed DeVaro

The Wang Family Professor, Departments of Management and Economics, California State University East Bay

Hideo Owan

Professor, School of Political Science and Economics, Waseda University; Faculty Fellow, RIETI


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The average monthly overtime hours has varied significantly between 2004 and 2016. Image: VoxEU
Analysis shows that overtime caused the productivity decline, rather than vice versa. Image: VoxEU

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