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Our research lab is involved with several studies relating to work-family conflict. One area we are investigating is which coping strategies are most effective for individuals trying to manage work and family stress. Dr. Clark has developed a scale which assesses the various work and family coping strategies individuals use, and we are conducting additional research to further examine these coping strategies. We are also interested in examining the cross-over effects of these coping strategies and work-family conflict on family members.
Dr. Clark and her research team are currently conducting several studies aimed at understanding what it means to be a workaholic. For example, in a series of studies, Dr. Clark and her collaborators found that workaholism is related to achievement-oriented personality traits, as well as many negative outcomes (e.g., burnout, decreased physical and mental health). She has found evidence that workaholism and work engagement are related to different emotions and work-family outcomes, which provides evidence of the distinctiveness of these two constructs. Unlike what has sometimes been hyped in the media, Dr. Clark's research suggests that workaholism is not related to increased work performance. Many future studies in this area have been planned.
Women and Work
Dr. Clark and her lab are currently conducting research on the experiences of women workaholics. In a recent book chapter, Dr. Clark and her students proposed that due to gender role expectations that women should be intensely committed to their families, women workaholics face unique struggles (both from internal and external sources) which make them especially susceptible to negative outcomes. In another area of research, Dr. Clark and her research team are conducting research examining women's re-entry into the workplace after a career break.