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A four-day workweek could be better for health and the climate, companies find » Yale Climate Connections


Lots of people feel refreshed after a three-day weekend. How about having one every week?

Almost 200 companies around the world have completed six-month trials of a four-day workweek, with no reductions in employee pay. So far, the results are promising.

Schor: “Stress, burnout, mental health, physical health … job satisfaction … all of those going in the right directions.”

Juliet Schor is an economist and sociologist at Boston College and is leading the trials in collaboration with the nonprofit Four Day Week Global.

Their results suggest that the shorter workweek has also had modest climate benefits.

On average, participants spent a little less time commuting by car. And many reported that they spent more time on climate-friendly activities, such as biking and walking, instead of driving.

Most companies have been able to implement the changes without sacrificing productivity.

But Schor says other studies she’s done suggest that working less while also rethinking our cultural drive to produce so much could yield larger reductions in carbon pollution.

Schor: “We get a climate benefit, and people get a well-being benefit. So I’d like to see work-time reduction in the climate discourse in a much bigger way than it has been.”

Reporting credit: Sarah Kennedy / ChavoBart Digital Media





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