Professional Immigrant Women's Experiences of Managing Work and Family Conflicts: The Case of Chinese and Taiwanese Faculty in Research Intensive Universities

Doctoral thesis OPEN
Li, Yun Ling (2017)
  • Publisher: Virginia Tech
  • Subject: Immigrant Women | Work Processes | Work and Family Conflicts | STEM (Science | Technology | Engineering | and Mathematics) Fields | Gender and Work

This study investigates first-generation Chinese and Taiwanese immigrant women faculty's workplace experiences and their strategies for managing work and family demands. By looking at how immigration, ethnicity, gender, and work processes shape these women's ideology and practices, this study addresses the following questions: How do married Chinese and Taiwanese immigrant women in research-intensive universities handle work and family conflicts? How do they negotiate their gender-role expectations and actual practices at work and home? And, finally, do their practices vary by academic disciplines based on the work processes involved in conducting research? This study points to the dynamic nature of cultures such that immigrant women can challenge some aspects of the traditional culture and retain those aspects that help them to receive support for managing work and family demands. Findings from this study also suggest that based on different work processes, what may seem to be flexible can, in fact, present particular barriers and impede workplace performance. Finally, these findings show that in some academic fields, being women may place obstacles for career advancement, but that co-ethnic network provides alternative opportunities for them and can lead to greater research productivity. This study resonates with previous studies showing that childcare responsibilities place women faculty at a disadvantageous position in terms of job evaluation and career advancement. As well, it illuminates how disciplinary differences concerning work process shape women faculty's capability of arranging work schedule flexibly. Ph. D.
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