D'oh! A paper (subscription required) published online in the Journal of Happiness found that reduction of working hours by external factors did not necessarily lead to an increase in personal or family satisfaction among workers.
The Korea University study examined longitudinal data from 1998-2008 to measure the impact of South Korea's Five-Day Working Policy, which was enacted in 2004. Aiming to benefit the well-being of workers and improve South Korea's leisure industry, the policy declared Saturdays non-work days and reduced standard workweek hours from 44 to 40, according to a release.
From the study:
The major contribution to the literature is the use of an exogenous reduction in working hours, due to the Korean Five-Day Working Reform, in a subjective well-being (SWB) model.
While satisfaction with working hours increased, reductions had no impact on job and life satisfaction.
Moreover, positive SWB effects might be offset by rising work intensity.
Homer Simpson, clock back in.