April 2019 – BSA conference

On 25 April I presented a paper that I co-authored with Dr Agnese Vitali (University of Trento) at the annual British Sociological Conference at Glasgow Caledonian University. The paper is titled Breadwinning or on the Breadline? Female Breadwinners’ Economic Characteristics across 20 Welfare States. We critique existing research on work/family arrangements and welfare states for overlooking an increasingly prevalent arrangement across couples, which is that of the female-breadwinner family model. We show that, contrary to popular depictions of female breadwinners as empowered, high-earning women, many are ‘on the breadline’, in that they are among the poorest of all households. What’s more, women who are breadwinners earn less as individuals, work fewer hours, and are more likely to work in lower-paying occupations and less likely to be managers/professionals than male breadwinners. See the press release from the BSA and my slides on the ‘Publications’ tab for more details.

Helen Kowalewska
Lecturer/Assistant Professor

Lecturer/Assistant Professor at the University of Bath with interests in comparative social policy, gender and employment.