Juggling work, family... and life in academia: The case of the "new" man
Paper in proceeding, 2012

Although the notion of the "new man" is gaining currency, there is very little research on how he manages to balance work and family. It is therefore timely to look more closely at this issue. We present preliminary results from an explorative pilot study on work-life balance and "new men" in academia. Using an interprative approach, in-depth interviews were carried out with academics from construction-related university departments in Britain and Sweden. Drawing on figures from the OECD and on Hofstede's masculine (Britain)/feminine (Sweden) dimension, we found that the small population of academic respondents studied struggled with the same kinds of work pressures and desires to achieve/perform according to the traditional norm of a masculine society. However, the Swedish men were more inclusive of the whole family life/circumstances in their accounts while the British men tended to be more focused on themselves. Since the analysis of the data is still on-going, the findings remain tentative. Early conclusions suggest that a satisfactory juggling of work-life balance for all these men is dependent on negotiations and re-negotiations of responsibilities between them and their partners. Some British men seemed to expect compromise and sacrifice by their partners, while for all Swedish men there was an expectation of compromise and sacrifice by both partners.


New man

Work-life balance

cross-national comparison



A.B. Raidén

Nottingham Trent University

Christine Räisänen

Chalmers, Civil and Environmental Engineering, Construction Management

Valeri Craven

Nottingham Trent University

28th Annual Conference of the Association of Researchers in Construction Management, ARCOM 2012; Edinburgh; United Kingdom; 3 September 2012 through 5 September 2012

978-095523906-9 (ISBN)

Driving Forces

Sustainable development

Areas of Advance

Building Futures (2010-2018)

Subject Categories

Other Social Sciences



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