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WORK-FAMILY CONFLICT AND COPING STRATEGIES ADOPTED BY WOMEN IN ACADEMIA IN NIGERIA BY ALUKO, YETUNDE. A (PhD) DEPARTMENT OF SOCIOLOGY OLABISI ONABANJO.

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Presentation on theme: "WORK-FAMILY CONFLICT AND COPING STRATEGIES ADOPTED BY WOMEN IN ACADEMIA IN NIGERIA BY ALUKO, YETUNDE. A (PhD) DEPARTMENT OF SOCIOLOGY OLABISI ONABANJO."— Presentation transcript:

1 WORK-FAMILY CONFLICT AND COPING STRATEGIES ADOPTED BY WOMEN IN ACADEMIA IN NIGERIA BY ALUKO, YETUNDE. A (PhD) DEPARTMENT OF SOCIOLOGY OLABISI ONABANJO UNIVERSITY AGO- IWOYE, OGUN STATE NIGERIA

2 INTRODUCTION BEFORE NOW, WORK AND FAMILY LIFE WERE LARGE;Y CONCIEVED AS “SEPARATE SPHERES”. BUT AS WOMEN JOINED THE LABOUR FORCE IN EVER MOUNTING NUMBERS OF ABOUT 36.5% (WORLD BANK,2002), GENDER BOUNDARIES BEGAN TO BLUR, “ WORK AND FAMILY” EMERGED AS A DISTINCT FIELD OF STUDY AND THE IMAGE OF WORK-FAMILY CONFLICT GRADUALLY UT INEXORABLY REPLACED LONG-HELD ASSUMPTIONS ABOUT “SEPARATE SPHERES” FOR WOMEN AND MEN

3 THE PROBLEM BALANCING THE DEMANDS OF WORK AND FAMILY ROLES HAS BECOME A PRINCIPAL DAILY TASK FOR MANY PROFESSIONAL WOMEN, ESPECIALLY IN ACADEMIA, AS A RESULT OF CHANGES IN DEMOGRAPHIC CHARACTERISTICS AND SOCIETAL ATTITUDES ABOUT WORK AND FAMILY

4 THE QUESTIONS WHAT ARE THE MAJOR OBSTACLES FACING WOMEN IN THIS PROFESSION, AND HOW FAR HAVE THEY OVERCOME THESE OBSTACLES? HOW DO THESE WOMEN COPE WITH THEIR MULTIPLE ROLES AS WIVES, MOTHERS AND EMPLOYEES? HOW HAVE THEY MANAGED TO CARRY OUT EACH OF THESE ROLES EFFECTIVELY? ARE THEIR STRATEGIES INDIVIDUALLY OR ORGANIZATIONALLY BASED?

5 OBJECTIVES GENERAL: TO EXAMINE WORK-FAMILY CONFLICT AND COPING STRATEGIES ADOPTED BY FEMALE MARRIED ACADEMICS IN NIGERIA SPECIFIC: TO EXAMINE THE KINDS OF WORK FAMILY CONFLICT EXPERIENCED BY FEMALE- MARREID ACADEMICS WITH CHILDREN TO INVESTIGATE HOW THE ROLE OF WOMEN AND THE STRUCTURE OF FAMILIES IN CONTEMPORAY NIGERIAN SOCIETY AFFECTS THE RELATIVE PRODUCTIVITY OF FEMALE ACADEMICS TO IDENTIFY AND EXAMINE THEIR COPING MECHANISMS

6 REVIEW OF LITERATURE THE ACADEMY TEND TO CONFORM TO THE DICHOTOMIZATIONOF THE SOCIAL WORLD INTO PUBLIC AND PRIVATE SPHERES. ACADEMIC WORKPLACE IS STRUCTURED AROUND THE IDEA THAT THE MALE PROFESSOR HAS A FULL-TIME WIFE AT HOME FULFILLING THE ROLE OF CHILDCARE WORKER. THIS THEN ALLOWS THE HYPOTHETICAL MALE FACULTY MEMBER TO DEDICATE TIME TO HIS UNIVERSITY WORK WITH THIS IDEOLOGY FIRMLY IN PLACE FOR OVER A CENTURY, UNIVERSITY OFFICIALS HAVE LARLY IGNORED THE ISSUE OF FAMILY- WORK INTEGRATION. INFACT, FOR DECADES THE SOLUTION TO ANY POSSIBLE WORK-FAMILY CONFLICT PROBABLY SEEMED SELF-EVIDENT: HAVE A WIFE AT HOME. WITH THE ADVENT OF WOMEN IN ACADEMIA, IT IS OBVIOUS THAT THE REAL WORLD DOES NOT NEATLY DIVIDE INTO PUBLIC AND PRIVATE SPHERES. THESE WOMEN ARE FACING MANY OF THE SAME ISSUES AS OTHER WOMEN JOAN WILLIAMS (2000) DESCRIBES THE “UNBENDING” NATURE OF GENDER, AS MANIFESTED IN A WORK-FAMILY SYSTEM BASED ON AN IDEOLOGY OF DOMESICITY. THIS SYSTEM SUPPORTS THE EXISTENCE OF AN “IDEAL WORKER”, UNENCUMBERED BY FAMILY RESPONSIBILITIES. CULTURAL BELIEFS ABOUT MASCULINITY AND FEMININITY ARE BULIT INTO THE VERY STRUCTURE OF THE WORK WORLD ACADEMIA IS MALE DOMINATED AND BASED ON THE MALE MODEL OF AN IDEAL WORKER. ALTHOUGH ON THE SURFACE, A MAJOR TENET OF ACADEMIA IS A PERCEIVED “LIBERAL PROGRESSIVISM” THAT UNDERLIES ITS ORGANIZATIONAL BELIEF SYSTEM (BAILYN,2003). INDEED ITS EMPHASIS ON FLEXIBILITY AND ITS MORE LIBERAL BELIEF SYSTEM SHOULD MAKE IT THE IDEAL PLACE OF WORK FOR WOMEN, IF ONE WANTS TO INTEGRATE WORK AND FAMILY DEMANDS. HOWEVER, AS WE WILL DEMONSTRATE, IT IS PRECISELY THE IMPLEMENTATION OF FLEXIBILITY, ALONG WITH THE DEMANDS OF TENURE AND PROMOTIONS THAT MAKE INTEGRATING WORK AND F AMILY IN THE ACADEMY A DIFFICULT AND GENDERED ENDEAVOUR

7 METHODOLOGY THERE ARE 36 PUBLIC UNIVERSITIES IN NIGERIA:- 16 FEDERAL, 10 STATE, 3 FEDERAL UNIVERSITIES OF TECHNOLOGY AND 3 STATE UNIVERSITIES OF TECHNOLOGY THE STUDY FOCUSED ON THE 16 FEDERAL AND 10 STATE UNIVERSITIES THAT HAVE FAIRLY SIMILAR TYPE OF ADMINISTRATIVE STRUTURES. OUT OF THE 16 FEDERAL UNIVERSITIES, 3 UNIVERSITIES (IBADAN, IFE AND LAGOS) WERE FROM THE SOUTHWESTERN PART OF NIGERIA (WHICH IS OUR FOCUS OF STUDY) AND ARE OF THE FIRST GENERATION. ALSO, ONE (ILORIN) IS OF THE SECOND GENERATION. OF THE 10 STATE UNIVERSITIES, 3 UNIVERSITIES (ONDO, OGUN AND LAGOS) WERE FROM THE SOUTH WESTERN PART OF NIGERIA AND ARE OF THE THIRD GENERATION.SO FOR THIS STUDY, ONE OF THE FIRST GENERATION AND THIRD GENERATION UNIVERSITIES WERE PURPOSELY SELECTED: IBADAN (RESIDENTIAL); OGUN (NON-RESIDENTIAL) SIX(6) FACULTIES WHERE WOMEN ARE ASSUMED TO BE MANY WERE SELECTED FROM EACH INSTITUTION- SOCIAL SCIENCES, AGRICULTURE, SCIENCES, ARTS, EDUCATION AND LAW A TOTAL OF 60FEMALE ACADEMICS MAKING 5 PER FACULTY (BOTH AT THE SENIOR AND JUNIOR LEVELS) FROM THE TWO INSTITUTIONS WERE INDEPTHLY INTERVIEWED

8 FINDINGS IT WAS CLEARLY DEMONSTRATED THAT: BOTH CATEGORIES OF WOMEN (SENOIR AND JUNIOR) VIEWED WORK-FAMILY INTEGRATION AS A MAJOR PROBLEM THROUGHOUT THEIR UNIVERSITY CAREERS. EACH OF THE WOMEN HAD TO COPE WITH THE PEOBLEMS INDIVIDUALLY, AND DID SO WITHOUT UNIVERSITY SUPPORT. THE CASE SEEMS TO BE MORE CRITICAL FOR WOMEN IN OOU, DUE TO THE FACT THAT THE INSTITUTION IS A NON-RESIDENTIAL ONE, WHICH ESULTS TO THE FACT THAT ALL TEND TO LIVE IN THE NEIGHBOURING TOWNS AND COME FROM THERE EVERYDAY. MEANWHILE IN UI, THIS IS A RESIDENTIAL INSTITUTION, MAJORITY OF THE WOMEN LIVE WITHIN THE CAMPUS A MAJOR FEATURE OF THE NIGERIAN SOCIETY IS THE PATRIARCAHL STRUCTURE. A WOMAN IS SOCIALIZED INTO A CULTURE OF FEMALE SUBORDINATION AND THE IDEOLOGY OF DOMESTICITY THE WOMENCLEARLY EXPERIENCED CHILDCARE ISSUES AS APERSONAL PROBLEM INSTEAD OF CHALLENGING THE UNIVERSITY’S POLICIES, PROCEDURES OR WAYS OF LIFE. MAJORITY MADE CONCESSIONS THAT WERE NECESSARY TO INTEGRATE HOME AND WORK LIFE. MANY OF THEM HIRED NANNIES AND HOUSEKEEPERS TO SHARE THE RESPONSIBILITIES OF THE PRIVATE SPHERE THIS HAS HOWEVER PERPETUATED THE IDEA THAT FAMILY LIFE IS SEPARATE FROM AN ACADEMIC’S WORK LIFE, AND THEREFORE CONTINUES TO REINFORCE THE IDEA OF AN IDEAL WORKER, UNENCUMBERED BY FAMILY RESPONSIBILITIES. THIS HAS CONTINUED TO ISOLATE WOMEN FROM UNIVERSITY LIFE AND THEY ARE PERCIEVED TO HAVE “ DIFFERENT INTEREST” HAN THEIR MALE COLLEAGUES

9 CONCLUSIONS WORK-FAMILY INEGRATION CLEARLY REMAINS A MAJOR ISSUES WITHIN UNIVERSITIES:- WORSE IN UNIVERSITIES OPERATING OFF-CAMPUS SYSTEM WORK-FAMILY INTEGRATION NEEDS TO BE ON THE FOREFRONT OF UNIVERSITIES’ STRATEGIC PLANS UNIVERSITIES MUST ACKNOWLEDGE THAT THE OUTDATED IDEAL WORKER MODEL NO LONGER MATCHES THE EXPERIENCES OF FEMALE FACULTY MEMBERS POLICIES THAT WILL HELP TO BETTER INTEGRATE WORK AND FAMILY HAVE TO BE IMPLEMENTED LIKE: CHIDCARE AND INFANT CARE, EQUITABLE DISTRIBUTION OF TEACHING AND COMMITTEE WORK, MODIFICATION OF DUTIES THAT WILL ALLOW WOMEN TO OBTAIN RELIEF FROM TEACHING AND/OR SERVICE OBLIGATION ALL THESE WILL REDUCE STRESS IN MANY WOMEN’S LIVES


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