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A critical examination of women's work-family conflict and career aspirations in the Chinese airline industry

Ren, Xiaoni 2010. A critical examination of women's work-family conflict and career aspirations in the Chinese airline industry. PhD Thesis, Cardiff University.

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Work demands and family responsibilities are often seen to be incompatible and, in the light of increasing female participation in paid employment, there is a growing concern about work-family conflict for women worldwide. Western literature suggests that both work and family-related factors give rise to women's work-family conflict. Also, the persistence of a gendered division of domestic labour - mainly arising from the role of women as the principle child-rearers and carers - have provided explanations for the continued disadvantage that women experience in the workplace. This study examines the extent to which these Western experiences prevail in modern China and considers the full range of factors within the Chinese context in order to develop an understanding of how work and family conflict for Chinese women. The empirical evidence reported was collected from case studies conducted in three Chinese airlines. Through the use of a multi-method approach - including questionnaires, qualitative interviews and documentary analysis - rich data has enabled insights to be gained into the issue of work-family conflict in the Chinese airline industry in particular and the Chinese context more broadly. The research shows that Western findings are not wholly applicable in the Chinese context because of a unique mix of traditional Chinese values alongside contemporary social, political and economic changes which enable women to participate more freely in the labour market. While it is found that family to work conflict is diminishing, significant work to family conflict is experienced mainly as a consequence of negative gendered organisational attitudes. This research builds upon Venter's (2002) three-level model of women's work-family experiences by developing a six-factor analytical model which enables a fuller understanding of women's work-family conflict and other relevant issues. The six-factor model also provides a framework for enhancing current knowledge about the lives of Chinese working women more generally.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Status: Unpublished
Schools: Business (Including Economics)
ISBN: 9781303189500
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 30 March 2016
Last Modified: 16 Oct 2014 13:18

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