Long Commuting Time and the Benefits of Telecommuting

Author Name MORIKAWA Masayuki (Vice President, RIETI)
Creation Date/NO. April 2018 18-E-025
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This study, using original survey data, presents empirical evidence on the relationship between commuting time and telecommuting on the one hand, and wages and subjective well-being on the other hand in Japan, where long commuting time is prevalent. According to the analysis, first, individuals, particularly female and non-standard employees, have a strong preference for avoiding long commuting hours compared to long working hours. Second, there is a wage premium for long commuters, and this is greater for female employees. Third, although the number of telecommuters is currently very small, they enjoy wage premiums and higher job satisfaction. These findings suggest that diffusion of telecommuting and satellite offices may contribute to increasing the labor market participation of female and elderly people in metropolitan areas.

This is the English version of the Japanese Discussion Paper (18-J-009) with some additional information and changes.