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Finding Middle Ground: The Relationship Between Cultural Schemas and Working Mothers’ Work-family Strategies

Presenters Name: 
Yuxin Wu
Primary Research Mentor: 
Elizabeth Gorman
Secondary Research Mentor: 
Sarah Mosseri
12:30 - 12:45
Time of Presentation: 
2019 - 12:30pm to 12:45pm
Room 481
Presentation Type: 
Presentations Academic Category: 
Social Science
Grant Program Recipient: 
Double Hoo Research Grant

Working mothers face a number of time constraints as they seek to manage both work and family responsibilities. Previous research on work-family strategies has shown that the ‘trade-offs’ working parents make at home and at work are stratified by structural factors such as gender, life stage and access to resources. In this study, we use the data from The 500 Family Study to examine how cultural and moral commitments influence women’s work-family strategy choices. We introduce a new typology of work-family strategies that does not treat women’s choices solely as “trade-offs,” and we run logistic regression to examine the relationships between women’s cultural beliefs and their strategy decisions. Our findings reveal the importance of dominant beliefs about work and family in women’s everyday decision-making, and we encourage political and business leaders to take this into account when making policy decisions.