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Professor Susan Felicity Himmelweit

Profile summary

Professional biography

Qualifications

B.A. (Cantab), PhD (Cantab)

Research interests

The inequalities within households, the economics of caring, feminist economics and the gender implications of economic policy.

Inequalities within Households

I am currently engaged with my colleagues Dr Jerome De Henau and Dr Cristina Santos in an ESRC funded research project entitled Gender and intra-household entitlements. A cross-national longitudinal analysis (GenIX). This project aims to understand the factors that influence the benefits individuals to household resources. We are conducting this study cross-nationally to explore the effect of socio-economic, cultural and policy differences.

The GenIX project arose out of a previous project on 'Within Household Inequalities and Public Policy' that formed part of the ESRC funded Gender Equality Network. Conducted jointly with Fran Bennett (Oxford University) and Holly Sutherland (Essex University), this collaborative mixed-methods research project examined the impact of policy changes on behaviour and distribution within households.

The Economics of Caring

I am also interested in various aspects of the economics of caring, including the macroeconomics of caring, caring as a distinctive relational labour process and explanations of caring behaviour at the micro-level. Much of my work is on how to theorise care within an economic framework, but I also work on care policy.

I am a member of Political and Social Economy of Care in a Globalising World (PASEC), an international network on care policy, which has been examining the effects of markets and migration on care policies and practices, and the Nordic Network for Research on Marketisation in Eldercare (NorMaCare).

Nationally I have, jointly with Prof Hilary Land (Bristol University), carried out studies on care policy, with respect to both child and elder care, for the trade union Unison, the Joseph Rowntree Foundation and the Equal Opportunities Commission.

I worked with Dr Maria Sigala on an ESRC funded a project on "The Determinants of Caring Behaviour" (funded as part of the ESRC's research programme on The Future of Work) examining the factors influencing the choices that mothers of small children make about employment and childcare.

Feminist Economics

I am a feminist economist, working with many others on developing a non-gender-blind approach to economics. I am an active member of the International Association for Feminist Economics and was its President in 2009. I was an Associate Editor of its journal Feminist Economics from 1996 to 2012 and jointly guest edited two Special issues on Children and Family Policy, vol. 6, no. 1, March 2000, with Nancy Folbre, and on Lone Mothers vol. 10, no. 2, July 2004, with Randy Albelda and Jane Humphries. I am on the editorial board of the Journal of Women, Politics and Policy.

The Gender Implications of Economic Policy

I am also involved in the gender analysis of budgets and in investigating the gender implications of economic policy, particularly the effects of tax and benefit policies on households and individuals within them, and on the balance between unpaid caring work and employment. I am part of an international movement to promote Gender Budgeting, the incorporation of gender impact considerations into the development of national and local budgets.

In the UK, I am the co-ordinator of the Policy Advisory Group and was the founding chair of the Women's Budget Group, a think tank that monitors, comments and advises on the gender implications of the government's social and economic policies. I have been consulted by the Treasury, the Department of Work and Pensions and the Department for Business, Innovation & Skills on policy issues concerning welfare reform, lone-parents, maternity and parental leave, childcare and work-life balance, and have given evidence to a number of policy committees and commissions. I am on two advisory groups for the Equality and Human Rights Commission, one on Working Better and the other on Making Fair Financial Decisions.

De Henau, J. and Himmelweit, S., (in press) 'Unpacking within household gender differences in partners' subjective benefits from household income'. Journal of Marriage and Family.

Himmelweit, S., Santos C., Sevilla, A. and Sofer C. (in press) 'Sharing of resources within the family and the economics of household decision-making'. Journal of Marriage and Family (in press).

De Henau, J. and Himmelweit, S., (in press) 'Comparing welfare regimes by their effects on intra-household inequalities' (with Jérôme De Henau) in Ferri, M. and Monsonis-Paya, I. eds. Sustainability and transformation in European Social Policy, Peter Lang.

Himmelweit, S. (2013) 'Care: feminist economic theory and policy challenges' Journal of Gender Studies Ochanomizu University, 16.

Brennan D., Cass, B. Himmelweit, S. and Szebehely, M.(2012) 'The Marketisation of Care: Rationales and Consequences in Nordic and Liberal Care Regimes' (with Deborah Brennan, Bettina Cass and Marta Szebehely), Journal of European Social Policy, 22(4): pp. 377–391

Bennett, F., De Henau J. Himmelweit, S. and Sung, S. (2012) 'Financial togetherness and autonomy within couples' in J. Scott, S. Dex and A. Plagnol (eds), Gendered Lives: Gender Inequalities in Production and Reproduction: New York: Edward Elgar

Himmelweit, S. and Land, H. (2011) 'Reducing gender inequalities to create a sustainable care system' Kurswechsel, 4 pp. 49–63

Annesley, C. and Himmelweit, S. (2011) 'Women' in Yeates, N., Haux, T., Jawad, R. and Kilkey, M. (eds). In defence of welfare: the impacts of the spending review. The Social Policy Association: 19–21.

De Henau, J. Himmelweit, S. and Santos, C. (2010) "Gender Equality and Taxation: A UK case Study" in C. Grown and I. Valodia (eds) Taxation and Gender Equity: A Comparative Analysis of Direct and Indirect Taxes in Developing and Developed Countries, Abingdon: Routledge International Studies in Money and Banking: 261–298.

Himmelweit, S. and Land, H. (2010) Who cares, who pays: A report on personalisation in social care prepared for UNISON, London: Unison

Himmelweit, S. and Land, H. (2008) Reducing gender inequalities to create a sustainable care system Joseph Rowntree Foundation Viewpoint Ref: 2293.

Himmelweit, S. (2008) "Policy on Care: a help or hindrance to gender inequality" in J. Scott, S. Dex and H. Joshi (eds) Women and Employment: Changing Lives and New Challenges, Cheltenham and Northampton, MA: Edward Elgar: 347–368.

Himmelweit, S. (2007) 'The Right to Request Flexible Working; A 'very British' approach to gender (in)equality' Australian Bulletin of Labour 33(2): 246–263

Himmelweit, S. (2007) 'The Prospects for Caring: economic theory and policy analysis' Cambridge Journal of Economics 31(4): 581–599

Himmelweit, S. and Land, H. (2007) Supporting Parents and Carers, EOC Working paper series 63, Manchester: Equal Opportunities Commission

A. Bertie, S. Himmelweit and A.B.Trigg (2006) "Social Norms, Cognitive Dissonance and Broadcasting: How to influence Economic Agents" in C. Bruun (ed.) Advances in Artificial Economics: the Economy as a Complex Dynamic System, Springer Verlag: 235–252

Himmelweit, S. (2006) 'Feminism and Economics' Soundings 33: 151–162

Himmelweit, S. (2005) 'Caring: The need for an economic strategy' Public Policy Research 12(3): 168–173

Himmelweit, S. (2005) 'Making Policy Makers More Gender Aware' Women, Politics and Policy, 27(1/2):109–121 (reprinted in Hartmann, H. ed. Gendering politics and policy: recent developments in Europe, Latin America, and the United States. USA: Haworth Press Inc.(2006) 101–121.)

Himmelweit, S. and Sigala, M. (2004) 'Choice and the relationship between identities and behaviour for mothers with pre-school children: Some implications for policy from a UK study' (with Maria Sigala) Journal of Social Policy 33(3), July; pp.455–478

Albelda, R. Bergmann, B., Green, K., Himmelweit, S. Koren, C. and the Women's Committee of One Hundred (2004) 'Lone Mothers: What is to be Done?' Feminist Economics 10(2), July; pp.237–264

Albelda, R., Himmelweit, S. and Humphries, J. (2004) 'The Dilemmas of Lone Motherhood: Key Issues for Feminist Economics' (with, Feminist Economics 10(2), July, pp.1–7

S. Himmelweit (2003) "An Evolutionary Approach to Caring" in Barker, D. & Kuiper, E. (eds.), Towards a Feminist Philosophy of Economics. An Anthology, Routledge (Francis & Taylor), London, 2003: 247–265

Himmelweit, S. (2002) 'Economic theory, norms and the care gap, or :why do economists become parents?' in Alan Carling, Simon Duncan and Rosalind Edwards (eds.), Analysing families: Morality and Rationality in Policy and Practice, Routledge, London, pp.231–250

Himmelweit, S. (2002) 'Tools for Budget Impact analysis: taxes and benefits', in K. Judd (ed), Gender Budget Initiatives: strategies, Concepts and experiences, United Nations Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM), New York, pp. 62–69.

Himmelweit, S. (2002) 'Making Visible the Hidden Economy: the Case for Gender-impact Analysis of Economic Policy', Feminist Economics 8(1), March, pp. 49–70.

A repository of research publications and other research outputs can be viewed at The Open University's Open Research Online.

Teaching interests

I am currently working on the new Level 2 economic course Running the economy (DD209) with first presentation in October 2013. Recently, I have worked on the Level 3 economics course Doing economics: people, markets and policy (DD309) and on You and your money: personal finance in context (DB123), a Level 1 introductory social sciences module, for which I wrote a chapter on 'Caring and Sharing'.

Publications

Gendered inequalities in competitive grant funding: an overlooked dimension of gendered power relations in academia (2019-12-06)
Steinþórsdóttir, Finnborg S.; Einarsdóttir, Þorgerður; Pétursdóttir, Gyða M. and Himmelweit, Susan
Higher Education Research & Development ((Early Access))


Sharing of resources within the family and the economics of household decision-making (2013-06)
Himmelweit, Susan; Santos, Cristina; Sevilla, Almudena and Sofer, Catherine
Journal of Marriage and Family, 75(3) (pp. 625-639)


Unpacking within-household gender differences in partners’ subjective benefits from household income (2013-06)
Himmelweit, Susan and de Henau, Jerome
Journal of Marriage and Family, 75(3) (pp. 611-624)


Care: feminist economic theory and policy challenges (2013-03)
Himmelweit, Susan
Journal of Gender Studies Ochanomizu University, 16 (pp. 1-18)


Examining public policy from a gendered intra-household perspective: changes in family-related policies in the UK, Australia and Germany since the mid-nineties (2013)
de Henau, Jerome and Himmelweit, Susan
Oñati Socio-Legal Series, 3(7) (pp. 1222-1248)


The marketisation of care: rationales and consequences in Nordic and liberal care regimes (2012-10)
Brennan, Deborah; Cass, Bettina; Himmelweit, Susan and Szebehely, Marta
Journal of European Social Policy, 22(4) (pp. 377-391)


Reducing gender inequalities to create a sustainable care system (2011)
Himmelweit, Susan and Land, Hilary
Kurswechsel, 4 (pp. 49-63)


The prospects for caring: economic theory and policy analysis (2007-07-30)
Himmelweit, Susan
Cambridge Journal of Economics, 31(4) (pp. 581-599)


The right to request flexible working; A 'very British' approach to gender (in)equality (2007)
Himmelweit, Susan
Australian Bulletin of Labour, 33(2) (pp. 246-263)


Feminism and Economics (2006)
Himmelweit, Susan
Soundings(33) (pp. 151-162)


Caring: The need for an economic strategy (2005)
Himmelweit, Susan
Public Policy Research, 12(3) (pp. 168-173)


Making policymakers more gender aware: experiences and reflections from the women's budget group in the United Kingdom (2005)
Himmelweit, Susan
Journal of Women, Politics & Policy, 27(1 & 2) (pp. 109-121)


Choice and the relationship between identities and behaviour for mothers with pre-school children: some implications for policy from a UK study (2004-07)
Himmelweit, Susan and Sigala, Maria
Journal of Social Policy, 33(3) (pp. 455-478)


Lone Mothers: What is to be done? (2004-07)
Himmelweit, Susan; Bergmann, Barbara; Green, Kate; Albelda, Randy and Koren, Charlotte
Feminist Economics, 10(2) (pp. 237-264)


The dilemmas of lone motherhood: key issues for feminist economics (2004)
Albelda, Randy; Himmelweit, Susan and Humphries, Jane
Feminist Economics, 10(2) (pp. 1-7)


Making visible the hidden economy: the case for gender-impact analysis of economic policy (2002-03-01)
Himmelweit, Susan
Feminist Economics, 8(1) (pp. 49-70)


Genuine social security (2019-09-19)
Himmelweit, Susan
In: Konzelmann, Sue; Himmelweit, Susan; Smith, Jeremy and Weeks, John eds. Rethinking Britain: Policy Ideas for the Many (pp. 138-140)
ISBN : 978-1447352525 | Publisher : Policy Press


Comparing welfare regimes by their effects on intra-household inequalities (2013-02)
de Henau, Jerome and Himmelweit, Susan
In: Ferri, Mireia and Monsonis-Paya, Irene eds. Sustainability and transformation in European Social Policy. (pp. 117-146)
ISBN : 978-3-0343-0901-1 | Publisher : Peter Lang


Financial togetherness and autonomy within couples (2012-05-31)
Bennett, Fran; de Henau, Jerome; Himmelweit, Susan and Sung, Sirin
In: Scott, Jacqueline; Dex, Shirley and Plagnol, Anke eds. Gendered Lives: Gender Inequalities in Production and Reproduction (pp. 97-122)
ISBN : 978-1-84980-626-8 | Publisher : Edward Elgar | Published : New York


Women (2011-02)
Annesley, Claire and Himmelweit, Susan
In: Yeates, Nicola; Haux, Tina; Jawad, Rana and Kilkey, Majella eds. In defence of welfare: the mpacts of the spending review February 2011 (pp. 19-21)
Publisher : The Social Policy Association


Gender equality and taxation. A UK case study (2010-05-14)
de Henau, Jerome; Himmelweit, Susan and Santos, Cristina
In: Grown, Karen and Valodia, Imraan eds. Taxation and gender equity. A comparative analysis of direct and indirect taxes in developing and developed countries. Routledge International Studies in Money and Banking (pp. 261-298)
ISBN : 978-0-415-49262-1 | Publisher : Routledge | Published : Abingdon


Policy on care: a help or hindrance to gender inequality (2008)
Himmelweit, Susan
In: Scott, Jacqueline; Dex, Shirley and Joshi, Heather eds. Women and Employment: Changing Lives and New Challenges (pp. 347-368)
ISBN : 9781847202499 | Publisher : Edward Elgar | Published : Cheltenham and Northampton, MA


Making policymakers more gender aware: experiences and reflections from the Women’s Budget Group in the United Kingdom (2006-01-31)
Himmelweit, Susan
In: Hartmann, Heidi ed. Gendering politics and policy: recent developments in Europe, Latin America, and the United States (pp. 101-121)
ISBN : 789030926 | Publisher : Haworth Press Inc. | Published : USA


Social norms, cognitive dissonance and broadcasting: How to influence economic agents (2006)
Bertie, Andrew; Himmelweit, Susan and Trigg, Andrew
In: Bruun, Charlotte ed. Advances in Artificial Economics: The Economy as a Complex Dynamic System. Lecture Notes in Economics and Mathematical Systems (pp. 235-252)
ISBN : 978-3-540-37247-9 | Publisher : Springer | Published : Berlin


An evolutionary approach to feminist economics: Two different models of caring (2003-03-13)
Himmelweit, Susan
In: Barker, Drucilla and Kuiper, Edith eds. Toward a feminist philosophy of economics. Economics as social theory (pp. 247-265)
ISBN : 415283876 | Publisher : Routledge | Published : London, UK


Economic theory, norms and the care gap, or: why do economists become parents? (2002-02-21)
Himmelweit, Susan
In: Carling, Alan; Duncan, Simon and Edwards, Rosalind eds. Analysing families: morality and rationality in policy and practice (pp. 231-250)
ISBN : 415250390 | Publisher : Routledge | Published : UK


Tools for budget impact analysis: taxes and benefits (2002)
Himmelweit, Susan
In: Judd, K ed. Gender Budget Initiatives: strategies, Concepts and experiences (pp. 62-69)
ISBN : 912917601 | Publisher : United Nations Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM) | Published : New York


Caring for children (2001)
Himmelweit, Susan
In: Himmelweit, Susan; Simonetti, Roberto and Trigg, Andrew eds. Microeconomics: neoclassical and institutionalist perspectives on economic behaviour (pp. 179-204)
ISBN : 978-1-86152-539-0 | Publisher : Thomson Learning Europe | Published : London, UK


Domestic Labour (2000)
Himmelweit, Susan
In: Peterson, Janice and Lewis, Margaret eds. The Elgar Companion to Feminist Economics (pp. 126-135)
ISBN : 978 1 84064 783 9 | Publisher : Edward Elgar | Published : Cheltenham, UK


The Dilemmas of lone motherhood: essays from feminist economics (2005-07-07)
Albelda, Randy; Himmelweit, Susan and Humphries, Jane eds.
ISBN : 041536017X | Publisher : Routledge | Published : UK


Inside the Household: From Labour to Care (2000)
Himmelweit, Susan ed.
ISBN : 9780333535868 | Publisher : Palgrave Macmillan | Published : London


The case For gender analysis of budgets and engaging with the policy making process: the UK women’s budget group (2001)
Himmelweit, Susan
In : Engendering the Budget Conference (2001, Scottsh Executive)


Investing in the Care Economy – Simulating employment effects by gender in countries in emerging economies (2017-01)
De Henau, Jérôme; Himmelweit, Susan and Perrons, Diane
International Trade Union Confederation


Investing in the Care Economy. A gender analysis of employment stimulus in seven OECD countries (2016-03)
De Henau, Jérôme; Himmelweit, Susan; Lapniewska, Zofia and Perrons, Diane
International Trade Union Confederation


The Impact on Women of the Coalition Spending Review 2010 (2010-11)
Annesley, Claire and Himmelweit, Susan
UK Women's Budget Group, London.


Who Cares: Who Pays? A Report on Personalisation in Social Care (2010-03)
Land, Hilary and Himmelweit, Susan
Unison, London.