Educational Differences in Women’s Work–Family Conflict: Do Child-Care Arrangements Play a Role?
Thursday, November 7, 2019
Plaza Building: Concourse Level, Plaza Exhibits (Sheraton Denver Downtown)
*Names in bold indicate Presenter
In recent years, increasing attention has been paid to the importance of addressing the impact of both policy context and individual factors, as well as the interaction between the two, to explain inequalities between social groups. This paper uses data from the European Social Survey 2010 to examine how partnered mothers’ work-family conflict varies with educational level and child care for children 0–2 years old. The study uses multilevel methods and adjusts for several work-related factors, such as occupation, non-standard working hours and flexible schedule, as well as the partner’s time spent on paid and unpaid work. The results show that more educated mothers experience higher work-family conflict than less educated mothers do. The difference can be explained in full by work-related characteristics. Stratified analyses show that child care lowers the conflict, but only for the less educated mothers. In fact, child care seems to increase the conflict for more educated mothers of very young children. Furthermore, a positive interaction effect indicates larger educational differences in work-family conflict in countries with extensive child care. The present study underscores the importance of recognizing the intersection of education and family policy, as they both play an important role for work-family conflict.