Gender Equality and Work-Family Spillover from a Cross-National Perspective

Tuesday, 12 July 2016
Location: Hörsaal 41 (Main Building)
Distributed Paper
Gayle KAUFMAN, Davidson College, USA
Hiromi TANIGUCHI, University of Louisville, USA
This paper examines how gender role attitudes at the individual level interact with gender equality at the country level to influence women and men’s experiences of negative work-family spillover. We use data from the 2012 International Social Survey Programme, including its Family and Changing Gender Roles IV module. Our sample consists of 20,679 respondents from 34 countries. Our dependent variables are work-to-family spillover (WF) and family-to-work spillover (FW). Our main independent variables of interest are gender role attitudes, work hours, family hours, and family status. We also include a country-level gender inequality variable, drawn from the 2014 Human Development Report. Our analysis consists of country-specific OLS regression and multilevel mixed-effects models. We find that women and parents experience higher levels of both WF and FW spillover than men and non-parents while those who are married experience lower levels of WF and FW spillover than those who are single. Work hours increase both WF and FW spillover while family hours increase only FW spillover. Those with more egalitarian gender role attitudes report lower levels of WF and FW spillover than their more traditional counterparts. At the country level, we find that those who reside in gender unequal countries experience greater levels of FM spillover. We also find some important interaction effects. First, mothers experience less WF spillover than fathers. Second, egalitarian women experience less spillover than egalitarian men. Third, while those who live in gender unequal countries tend to have higher family to work spillover, the effect of living in gender unequal countries is reduced for those who hold more gender egalitarian attitudes. Overall, we see that gender egalitarian attitudes at the individual level reduce spillover for women but increase spillover for men and that individual egalitarianism reduces the negative impact of country-level gender inequality on spillover.