Institute for Social and Economic Change

Working Paper: 365

Work-Life Balance among Working Women —
A Cross-Cultural Review

Gayatri Pradhan



This paper explores the ways in which working women balance their work and family life. There has been a growing concern over work-family issues and the notion of balancing these two domains due to an increasing number of women entering the world of paid employment. Such a discussion rarely comes into the picture in the case of men. A clear-cut demarcation between work and home is made with men being less involved in chores at home. The concept of work-family balance has been used to explain the equilibrium between responsibilities at work and responsibilities outside paid work. Having a balance in the work and family domains implies that this equilibrium is in the required proportion for the concerned individual. Several studies have been conducted on work-family issues in Western countries, but findings from these studies cannot be projected to other countries since work and family roles are perceived differently in different countries. Work-family experience is not universal, but rather culture-specific which is evident in the literature. Thus, there is a need to analyse how working women balance work-family issues across different countries.


Working Papers