The promise and possibility of a four-day workweek

Skip the five-day work week? Maybe.
Manasvita S. | Unsplash

A five-day, 40-hour workweek is the norm for many American workers. But why? What if instead of five work days, we had four? 

The idea of a four-day work week is gaining more and more traction. A recent pilot program in the U.K. tested four-day workweeks with fewer hours than the standard 40. The study showed positive results across the board for both employees and employers.

MPR News host Angela Davis talks with three experts about the possibility and promise of a shorter workweek. 


  • Chris Farrell is senior economics contributor at Marketplace, American Public Media's nationally syndicated public radio business and economic programs. He’s also a senior economics contributor at MPR News.

  • William P. Jones  is a professor of history at the University of Minnesota who studies and writes about organized labor, unions, racial inequality and the history of the Civil Rights movement.

  • Krista Lynn Minnotte is a professor of sociology at University of North Dakota and the co-editor in chief of “The Social Science Journal.” She has a Ph.D. in sociology.

MPR News is Member Supported

What does that mean? The news, analysis and community conversation found here is funded by donations from individuals. Make a gift of any amount today to support this resource for everyone.