Seoul Adopts the Siesta, Will Allow City Employees to Take Afternoon Naps

The Seoul Metropolitan Government has offered employees the chance to take an hour off of work for an afternoon snooze, just as long as the workers make it up by arriving to work earlier or leaving later.

What's the Latest?


If you had the chance to take an hour off work to take an afternoon nap, granted that you made the hour up by arriving earlier or staying later, would you take it? Employees of the Seoul Metropolitan Government (SMG) will be able to make that decision beginning August 1 as the city implements the first form of the Korean siesta. SMG employees, who already work from 9 A.M. to 6 P.M., will be given the opportunity to nap for an hour between 1 P.M. and 6 P.M. They will have to inform their supervisors at the start of the day if they intend to take advantage of the nap gap. This would mean arriving at 8 A.M. or leaving work at 7 P.M.

What's the Big Idea?

The siesta is a common tradition in Spain and Latin American countries with supporters worldwide. Seoul's decision to give the afternoon nap a go is part of an effort to reduce employee stress and boost productivity. An SMG spokesman spoke to the Korea Times about the new policy:

"Employees can use lounges, conference rooms and other places to rest. Frankly, I don't think many will go for siestas because they have to make up for lost hours," the spokesman said. "Nonetheless, the city government will spend more money next year to create more rest areas for employees."

Read more at the BBC and the Korea Times

Photo credit: Creativa / Shutterstock

Related Articles

Human skeletal stem cells isolated in breakthrough discovery

It's a development that could one day lead to much better treatments for osteoporosis, joint damage, and bone fractures.

Image: Nissim Benvenisty
Surprising Science
  • Scientists have isolated skeletal stem cells in adult and fetal bones for the first time.
  • These cells could one day help treat damaged bone and cartilage.
  • The team was able to grow skeletal stem cells from cells found within liposuctioned fat.
Keep reading Show less

How exercise helps your gut bacteria

Gut bacteria play an important role in how you feel and think and how well your body fights off disease. New research shows that exercise can give your gut bacteria a boost.

National Institutes of Health
Surprising Science
  • Two studies from the University of Illinois show that gut bacteria can be changed by exercise alone.
  • Our understanding of how gut bacteria impacts our overall health is an emerging field, and this research sheds light on the many different ways exercise affects your body.
  • Exercising to improve your gut bacteria will prevent diseases and encourage brain health.
Keep reading Show less

Giving octopuses ecstasy reveals surprising link to humans

A groundbreaking new study shows that octopuses seemed to exhibit uncharacteristically social behavior when given MDMA, the psychedelic drug commonly known as ecstasy.

Image: damn_unique via Flickr
Surprising Science
  • Octopuses, like humans, have genes that seem to code for serotonin transporters.
  • Scientists gave MDMA to octopuses to see whether those genes translated into a binding site for serotonin, which regulates emotions and behavior in humans
  • Octopuses, which are typically asocial creatures, seem to get friendlier while on MDMA, suggesting humans have more in common with the strange invertebrates than previously thought
Keep reading Show less