Work-Family Balance and the Well-Being of Educated Women in Iran

  • Narjes MehdizadehEmail author
Part of the International Handbooks of Quality-of-Life book series (IHQL)


In developing countries, the issue of balancing work and family and its effect on women’s well-being has not yet been explored to the same extent as it has been in developed countries. This chapter focuses on the experiences of educated women in Iran in combining employment and childcare. Overall, this study demonstrates the severe tensions that exist between caring and working for women in Iran. It shows the strong gendered values around caring that inform both mothers’ and policy-makers’ approaches to work-family balance and women’s well-being and highlights, moreover, that female citizens in Iran are neither only workers nor only carers: they are both at the same time, as well as being wives. National childcare policies in the welfare regime of Iran specifically, and the Middle East generally, should provide more social facilities and introduce both formal and informal care arrangements, which would improve the level of women’s and children’s well-being.


Women’s well-being Children’s well-being Work and family balance Middle East Iran Educated mothers Family policy 



I would like to acknowledge the useful comments given to me by Professor Simon Duncan of the Center for Applied Social Research of Bradford University, for which I am grateful. In addition, I would like to thank the two editors of this book for their helpful comments. My thanks also go to the British Academy, of which I was a Fellow during the time of writing this chapter.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Social and Political SciencesUniversity of GlasgowGlasgowUK

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