Institute for Social and Economic Change

Working Paper: 368

Conceptualising Work-Life Balance

Gayatri Pradhan



The relationship between work and family has been explained by several theoretical models which vary accordingly in terms of their underlying assumptions, their emphasis on the nature, degree and direction of the relationship between social systems and the nature and magnitude of the impact of the systems on the individual. These theoretical models include work-family conflict, work-family enrichment, spill-over and cross-over theories, congruence, integration and ecological theories and resource drain and compensation theories. In addition, theories like the border theory, boundary theory, gender inequality theory and work-life management theory have also highlighted the relationship between work and family. All these theories depict a similar connotation of balance, i.e., juggling and managing multiple roles successfully especially for working women.


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