Invisible Assets: What Working Fathers Learn from Their Families

Wednesday, July 16, 2014: 11:50 AM
Room: 315
Oral Presentation
Marc GRAU-GRAU , School of Social and Political Science, University of Edinburgh, United Kingdom
Within the work-family balance literature little is know about the benefits and rewards perceived by working fathers in combining their work and family roles. As literature revealed, research on work-family balance has primarily focus on negative outcomes between work and family domain. The conflict perspective is rooted in scarcity theory (Goode, 1960; Marks, 1977), which assumes that human resources of time, energy and attention are finite. Work-family researchers (Barnett, 1998; Greenhaus and Parasuraman, 1999) have called for an approach or theory that examines the positive side of work-family balance.

Greenhaus and Powell (2006) did an effort to fully capture the mechanism of enrichment. During the same year, Carlson et al. (2006) published a work-family enrichment scale, based on Greenhaus and Powell’s construct. The recent valid work-family enrichment scale is helping us to examine and determine whether employed parents are gaining knowledge, acquiring skills or having new perspectives in one role that can have a positive impact on the other role. However, neither the theoretical arguments nor the work-family enrichment scale are shedding light on which specific skills, knowledge, resources, values or perspectives are working parents developing or learning in one role that can be transferred in another role and vice versa. Qualitative research methods seem useful for this aim.

Thus, the purpose of this study are, first, to examine if the rewards and benefits perceived by working fathers in occupying both roles fits in the work-family enrichment construct proposed by Greenhaus and Powell (2006), second, to examine if there are differences between the rewards and benefits developed at home and rewards and benefits developed at the workplace; third, to extend the work-family enrichment theory to new samples in Catalonia.