Ideals or Compromises? The Attitude-Behaviour Relationship in Mothers' Employment

Posted: 9 Oct 2009

See all articles by Nadia Steiber

Nadia Steiber

Vienna University of Economics

Barbara Haas

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Date Written: October 2009

Abstract

This article addresses the marked variations in women's employment that exist within and across countries, with a specific focus on mothers of children below school-going age. Using comparative survey data for 26 countries, it investigates the determinants of maternal employment behaviour with women's attitudes as important predictors, alongside cost-benefit considerations and the influence of national context factors. Results show that mothers' personal care attitudes are significantly related to their paid work involvement. Yet, multilevel analyses reveal cross-country differences in the predictive power of such attitudes. Stressing that neither women's choices nor their attitudes can in fact be taken as expressions of what their personal ideals are, observed attitude-behaviour relations are interpreted as the result of two underlying processes-the selection of behaviours based on attitudes and the adaptation of attitudes to match the chosen behaviour.

Keywords: labor supply, women, preferences, capabilities, social policy, culture, J22 time allocation and labor supply

Suggested Citation

Steiber, Nadia and Haas, Barbara, Ideals or Compromises? The Attitude-Behaviour Relationship in Mothers' Employment (October 2009). Socio-Economic Review, Vol. 7, Issue 4, pp. 639-668, 2009. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1484544 or http://dx.doi.org/mwp015

Nadia Steiber (Contact Author)

Vienna University of Economics ( email )

Welthandelsplatz 1
Vienna, Wien 1020
Austria

Barbara Haas

affiliation not provided to SSRN

No Address Available

Register to save articles to
your library

Register

Paper statistics

Abstract Views
255
PlumX Metrics