The purpose of this editorial is to examine sociological research on the possibilities and pitfalls of social policies for mothers' employment participation, and identify…
The purpose of this editorial is to examine sociological research on the possibilities and pitfalls of social policies for mothers' employment participation, and identify research gaps in the existing literature. The paper aims to focus mainly on the implications of parental leave schemes on mothers' employment participation.
The editorial discusses the inconsistencies in the current sociological debate on the impact of social policies on mothers' employment.
The relationship between parental leave policies and women's participation in the work force is complex. The literature shows a disagreement about whether such policies mitigate family‐related career disadvantages, or in fact, contribute to gender inequality in the labour market. In order to gain a deeper understanding of the interplay between social policies and mothers' labour market participation, and national and cross‐national variation in the consequences of childbirth on women's labour market participation the editorial points at the several aspects that need to be investigated in greater depth by further research. The editorial emphasizes the necessity of conducting in‐depth international comparisons in order to account for between‐country variations as well as within‐country variations. Furthermore, the symbolic nature of family policy must not be neglected.
The editorial identifies research gaps to be addressed by further research.