Workplace Flexibility and Gender Equity

Despite pulling even with men in labor force participation and surpassing men in educational achievement, women are underrepresented in executive and leadership positions (accounting for only 3% of leaders of Fortune 500 companies and 17% of the U.S. Senate in 2009) and receive less pay. Though women have made significant gains in the workplace (women are projected to become a majority of the U.S. workforce in 2010, for example), certain structural and social constraints hinder gender equity.

Because they are often expected to shoulder the bulk of caregiving responsibilities, and because the workplace is not always accommodating of caregiving contingencies, women disproportionately face a career-family dilemma that many contend is a barrier to full gender equity in America.

Workplace flexibility is crucial to achieving full gender equity in America: it reduces the de facto career disadvantage of primary caregivers.

Researchers and Authors