Balancing academia and family life: The gendered strains and struggles between the UK and China compared
MetadataShow full item record
Purpose: This paper aims to explore and compare academics’ experiences of managing work-life balance (WLB) in the British and Chinese contexts. The authors have three specific purposes. Firstly, to investigate whether there are marked gender differences in either context, given female and male academics’ work is considered fully comparable. Secondly, to examine contextual factors contributing to gender differences that influence and shape decisions in WLB and career paths. Thirdly, to explore the gendered consequences and implications. Design/methodology/approach: A cross-national and multilevel analytical approach to WLB was chosen to unpick and explore gender land contextual differences and their influence on individual academics’ coping strategies. To reflect the exploratory nature of uncovering individual experience and perceptions, the authors used in-depth, semi-structured interviews. In total, 37 academics participated in the study, comprised of 18 participants from 6 universities in the UK and 19 participants from 6 universities in China. Findings: This study reveals gendered differences in both the British and Chinese contexts in three main aspects, namely, sourcing support; managing emotions; and making choices, but more distinct differences in the latter context. Most significantly, it highlights that individual academics’ capacity in cultivating and using coping strategies was shaped simultaneously by multi-layered factors at the country level, the HE institutional level and the individual academics’ level. Originality/value: Very few cross-cultural WLB studies explore gender differences. This cross-national comparative study is of particular value in making the “invisible visible” in terms of the gendered nature of choices and decisions within the context of WLB. The study has significant implications for female academics exercising individual scope in carving out a career, and for academic managers and institutions, in terms of support, structure and policy.
Gender in Management: An International Journal;
Ren, X. (2020) 'Balancing academia and family life: The gendered strains and struggles between the UK and China compared', Gender in Management: An International Journal. DOI: 10.1108/GM-06-2019-0093.
Article published in Gender in Management: An International Journal on 20 February 2020 (online), available at: https://doi.org/10.1108/GM-06-2019-0093.
Cardiff Metropolitan University (Grant ID: Cardiff Metropolian (Internal))
Showing items related by title, author, subject and abstract.
Hutson, Emma (2014)This dissertation examines the representation of female-to-male (FtM) trans individuals within six key texts. 'Trans' is 'a broad umbrella adjective intended to capture the multiple forms of sex and gender crossing and ...
Taylor, Harriet (University of Wales Institute Cardiff, 2011)The coaching process is an under-theorised, ill-defined area (Cote et al, 1995), which as a result causes conflict when researchers have discussed the nature of the process. Indeed, no academic framework exists that depicts ...
El-Sherif Ibrahim, Nashwa Samir (Cardiff Metropolitan University, 2004)Literature on employment in tourism addresses a division between tourism workers in gender and race. Nevertheless, there has been little attention to these issues to date. This thesis contributes to the knowledge on gender ...