NewsRoundup

The Roundup will be brought to you in July and August by the new Work and Family Researchers Network (WFRN), an international membership organization for interdisciplinary work and family academics. The WFRN welcomes the participation of policy makers and practitioners as it seeks to promote knowledge and understanding of work and family issues among the community of global stakeholders. The Roundup is a compilation of the latest news articles, reports and other materials related to workplace flexibility delivered to your inbox on Monday and Thursday. In the fall, the WFRN will launch its new website which will include a News Feed among other features. We hope that you will get involved as a member and by posting the latest news. Questions?

September 28, 2010

Articles

Still Few Women in Management, Report Says

Catherine Rampell • New York Times • September 27, 2010

“Managers who were mothers earned 79 cents of every dollar paid to managers who were fathers, after adjusting for things like age and education. This gap has stayed the same since at least 2000.  The greater toll that parenthood appears to take on women’s paychecks may help explain why, generally speaking, female managers are less likely to have children than their male counterparts.  In 2007, 63 percent of female managers were childless, compared with just 57 percent of male managers. Of those managers who did have children, men on average had more children than their women counterparts.”

More workers facing a sick leave conundrum

Eve Tahmincioglu • MSNBC • September 27, 2010

“Many workers like Jorud have faced this conundrum, and it’s only gotten worse during this economic downturn as companies cut back on staffing, leaving fewer people with more work, workplace experts contend. That makes it even harder to take time off to deal with a medical condition, whether it’s their own or that of a family member.”

Empowering women economically: 2010 Women’s Economic Opportunity Index

Leo Amruzzese • VoxEU.org • September 26, 2010

“Women’s economic opportunity is defined as a set of laws, regulations, practices, customs and attitudes that allow women to participate in the workforce under conditions roughly equal to those of men, whether as wage-earning employees or as owners of a business. The goal of this index is to spur debate and research on the factors that affect women’s ability to access jobs and business opportunities. It is also intended to prompt improvements in policy and programmes that will encourage women’s participation in the workplace and thus create more productive economies overall.”

Obama and the Democrats must reconnect with working-class voters

Joan C. Williams • Washington Post • September 26, 2010

“For two generations after World War II, a blue-collar man could support his family; buy a house, car and washing machine; and send his kids to good public schools. The typical blue-collar household in 1973 was more than twice as well off as the equivalent household 25 years earlier. [. . .]  Then the economy shifted. The wages of high-school-educated men fell by nearly a fourth in the 1980s and 1990s. Family income fell less, but only because families sent wives into the labor force.”

Men’s Lib

Andrew Romano and Tony Kodoupil • Andrew Romano and Tony Kodoupil • September 20, 2010

“As the U.S. economy has transitioned from brawn to brain over the past three decades, a growing number of women have gone off to work. Men’s share of the labor force has declined from 70 percent in 1945 to less than 50 percent today, and in the country’s biggest cities, young, single, childless women—that is, the next generation—earn 8 percent more than their male peers.”

Work-Life Balance: Men Want It, Too

Myra H. Strober • US Banker •

“Employers need to develop flexible workplaces beyond providing paid maternity and paternity leaves. They should have programs that allow women and men to reduce their hours or move into less-demanding jobs when their children are young or their parents are ill, and to move back to full-time work without penalty. Employers would do well to follow the example of Deloitte, which lets employees take leave or reduce their hours for a period of time and return without a penalty in earnings or job responsibility.”

Reports

Women in Management: Analysis of Female Managers’ Representation, Characteristics, and Pay

• Government Accountability Office • September 20, 2010

“[…] this report addresses the following three questions:  (1) What is the representation of women in management positions compared to their representation in nonmanagement positions by industry? (2) What are the key characteristics of women and men in management positions by industry? and (3) What is the difference in pay between women and men in full-time management positions by industry?”

Blogs

Why Men Matter in the Work/Life Debate

Melissa De Witte • Glass Hammer • September 28, 2010

“The problem in America is that the workforce is mismatched to the type of workplace organization. He argues that companies need to bring parents into the workplace culture by optimizing these types of employees. He pointed out how things like flexible working time, the virtual office, and even balanced travel time has saved Deloitte $14 million annually by retaining workers in this way.”

Keep Your Options Open! Young Women Planning Flexibility Into Their Lives

Linda Brodsky • Brodsky Blog • September 27, 2010

“Twenty-eight years old and she understands that she might want to have more flexibility as she has a family and her interests and talents (even those she doesn’t yet know she has) grow. Aren’t flexibility and personal growth major issues for all women no matter your life’s path?  [. . .]  At the ‘Academy’ I am presenting the data from our Women In Otolaryngology survey completed this past summer. The top concern of those answering the survey, a predominantly younger crowd, was work-life balance.”

The Ultimate Schedule for Work-Life Balance?

Rachel Emma Silverman • Wall Street Journal - The Juggle • September 26, 2010

“Is this the ultimate schedule for work-life balance?  Employees at Briargate Trading, a New York trading firm, work hard around the stock market’s 9:30 AM opening and 4 PM closing. But the rest of the day, while most other finance workers are hunched over their desks, workers head to the movies, play tennis in Central Park, take leisurely lunches, visit their kids’ schools or work out.”

Why Is Washington Ignoring the Freelance Economy?

Sara Horowitz • Atlantic - Business • September 24, 2010

“Despite the fact that close to one-third of the country’s workforce is comprised of independent workers, this sizeable chunk of our economy has none of the protections and benefits that ‘traditional’ employees have. [. . .]We’ve left these 42 million workers out to dry and entirely out of our social support system. We’re dealing with an outdated employment system - it was built for a workforce from the 1930s, and it no longer works for us today. So as a result, a growing number of working Americans are left with no protections.”

A Crazy 40-Year-Old Experiment Suggests Work-Life Balance Is Possible

Belinda Luscombe • Time - Healthland • September 22, 2010

“The Work Sharing Couples Project, devised and conducted by two men, ran from 1970 until 1975.  [. . .] Now, more than 30 years later, University of Oslo researcher Margunn Bjørnholt has found and interviewed 14 of the original 16 couples, to see how they fared. How much did years of part-time work set back their careers? How much did a completely different model of work-life balance affect their marriages and their finances?”

Global News

The secret to work-life balance

Tralee Pearce • Globe and Mail, Canada • September 27, 2010

“You make your own schedule. You decide when to hit the keyboard and when to hit the playground with your kid. You’ve got the latest BlackBerry to ensure you don’t miss any important calls while you’re cleaning up after dinner. Work doesn’t own you – you own work, right? Think again. There may be some major drawbacks to all that purported freedom.”

We’re at the office less thanks to Gen-Y

Stefanie Balogh • Courier-Mail, Australia • September 27, 2010

“Under 25s are the only age group spending less than 40 hours a week at their desks, proving they are more adept than older workers at juggling their work-life balance.  A new Bankwest Working Times report, released today, shows Queensland’s 2.3 million workers put in an average of 41.3 hours a week at work over the past year to August.  It adds up to 1.3 hours less in the office a week than 10 years ago, and has handed Queenslanders back the equivalent of nearly nine working days over the course of the year, compared with 2000.”