Integrating Work and Family: Challenges and Choices for a Changing World

Integrating Work and Family: Challenges and Choices for a Changing World

Integrating Work and Family: Challenges and Choices for a Changing World

Integrating Work and Family: Challenges and Choices for a Changing World

Synopsis

Despite calls for a renewal of family values and the proliferation of corporate work-family programs, the goal of achieving a healthy balance between the demands of work and a satisfying family life remains elusive. Dr. Parasuraman, Dr. Greenhaus, and the contributors to this well-balanced and thoughtful volume examine this increasingly prevalent social dilemma from a "stakeholder perspective." They see work-family tensions as a multifaceted social issue, and they examine the nature and consequences of these tensions from the viewpoints of individuals, employers, consultants, counseling professionals, and other service providers. Their inclusion of legal, cultural, international, and research perspectives and recognition of the unique concerns of vulnerable groups, such as nonexempt employees and ethnic minorities, add to the breadth of coverage. Academics in the tocial and behavioral sciences, executive decision-makers in government and business, human resource professionals, and employed men and women interested in achieving work-life balance will find this volume insightful, stimulating, and useful.

Excerpt

Researchers and practitioners in a variety of social science disciplines have become vitally concerned about the widespread experience of work-family problems by men and women in contemporary society. The pervasiveness and complexity of work-family conflict have contributed to the emergence of work- family concerns as a prominent social issue of the 1990's. In response to these concerns, a wide array of new human resource specialties has emerged, such as work/family and diversity consultants, direct service providers, and service brokers in what has come to be known as the "Work/Life" field. Yet there is limited dialog among these groups of people and constituencies interested in gaining a better understanding about the issues involved. There is also little critical appraisal of what solutions work, what solutions don't work, and why.

The publication of this book is the culmination of our long-standing desire to foster informed dialog and debate among the various constituencies that share an interest in, or have responsibility for implementing, well-thought-out and enduring solutions to the work/life dilemmas of employees, families, and employers. The decision to bring out this volume was inspired by the enormous success of the Fifth International Stein Conference on "Work, Family, and Community in the 21st Century: Issues, Challenges, and Agenda for Change," sponsored by the Louis and Bessie Stein Foundation and held in Philadelphia in November 1994. Organized by the College of Business and Administration at Drexel University, the conference featured leaders from government and industry, as well as work-family experts and researchers from universities and think tanks, who are in the vanguard of research and practice on work-family issues.

The favorable reactions to the conference as a whole, the enthusiasm and energy generated by the presentations, and our desire to continue the dialog by . . .

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