New Theoretical Perspectives on the Nordic Model of Work-Family Reconciliations
This is a joint project between the Department of Sociology and Political Science at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology and the Institute for Social Research. The project is motivated by the Sociology evaluation panel (2010) who points out that research in he interface between organization and work, the welfare state and family, gender and sexuality constitutes some of the most important areas in Norwegian sociology; that it contributes to the international sociological research community; and that there is potential for further theorizing in line with the international interest in the Nordic model. The evaluation of NFR's program on Work life research (2009) gave both institutions (represented by this research team) favorable assessments and characterized them as being in the international research front.
On the one hand Nordic work-family policy is internationally understood as a modern-day utopia accommodating the needs of parental care giving and market work according to egalitarian ideals. On the other hand the success of the Nordic model of work-family reconciliation is rated as "half-full".
Structures and cultures continue to shape gendered agencies in ways that undermine gender equality in both private and public spheres. The project team will work with outstanding international scholars in the field aspiring to develop new understanding of the Nordic situation. Relevant theories are the cultural perspective, which sees the work/life balance as a question of everyday practical morality, and the institutional perspective where the organization between the state, market and family are in focus.
The study will be based on three ongoing empirical studies conducted by the research team:
The flexibility of the father's quota in a multicultural Norwegian society.
Is family-friendliness enough?
The Norwegian model in international companies located in Norway.
The projects focuses on different levels of analysis. Together they will constitute the empirical basis for theorizing and international publication.