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Iceland moves to 4 day week

by Joy Green, Jul 26
1 minute read

Trials of a four day week in Iceland were ‘overwhelmingly successful’ and the majority of workers in Iceland (86%) will now move to shorter hours for the same pay. Rekyavik City Council and the national government conducted trials across a range of workplaces and found that productivity remained the same or improved in most cases, and wellbeing and work-life balance improved significantly.

person in blue jacket sitting on brown wooden chair near brown wooden table during daytime

So what

As well as being good for wellbeing and mental health (by reducing stress and burnout), four day weeks can also cut carbon footprints. A recent report by the 4 Day Week Campaign found that shifting to a four day week in the UK (without loss of pay) could cut the UK’s carbon footprint by 21% by 2025, equivalent to taking almost every car in the country off the road.

In the wake of coronavirus, other experiments are underway with reduced hours for workers. Spain is piloting a 4 day week for companies, and Unilever in New Zealand is allowing staff to cut their hours by 20% without loss of pay, as part of a trial. Could this be the start of a bigger shift in working patterns?




by Joy Green Spotted 37 signals

Joy is a Principal Futurist at Forum for the Future.

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