The increased use of remote working will not completely fade away after the defeat of COVID-19. This structural change in production presents numerous challenges, of which the unequal distribution of housing conditions across individuals is of the utmost importance, as it creates new sources of inequality both in current earnings distribution (pay differences across workers who would be equally productive under the same working conditions) and in terms of career opportunities. In this Policy Brief, we firstly stress the need for better data collection to monitor housing conditions among remote workers. We then propose seven different policy strategies for G20 countries: i) investments in hybrid housing-working spaces, ii) providing good Internet connections to everybody, iii) international co-ordination in regulating remote working, iv) regulation of remote working and decentralisation of collective bargaining, v) family policies for the sharing of care responsibilities, vi) urban planning and co-ordination in the supply of decentralised co-work sites, and vii) prevention of possible new forms of discrimination.
Research Fellow, ISPI Centre for Business Scenarios