It seems to me that a reasonable explanation for the workweek not decreasing is that we've reached an equilibrium point. On one hand, if you own a company and decrease the work week, some other company will outdo you by having employees who are willing to work a longer week. This creates the floor for the average workweek. On the other hand, societal pressures (e.g., overtime laws, wage laws) tend to put a ceiling on the average workweek. So regardless of the technological changes, unless one of the two factors changes, the average workweek should remain relatively constant.
posted by Chris Funkhouser
February 11, 2009
About once a month at Sigma Xi headquarters, we liven up the lunch hour with an American Scientist Pizza Lunch talk. In these informal lectures, scientists describe new research to nonscientists. The series is light on jargon but heavy on solid science. Each Pizza Lunch offers an in-depth look at its subject, whether it's bedbugs or the smart grid. Click below to read about and download these talks -- and to subscribe!
JSTOR, the online academic archive, now contains complete back issues of American Scientist from its inception in 1913 (as Sigma Xi Quarterly) through 2005.
The table of contents for each issue is freely available to all users; those with institutional access can read each complete issue.
View the full collection here.