Title: Social issues and workplace culture: a case study in Sri Lanka

Authors: Thilakshi Kodagoda

Addresses: Department of Human Resources Management, Faculty of Management and Finance, University of Colombo, Sri Lanka

Abstract: Many governments have encouraged women into employment and education but women's participation in top management posts is very low and they hold low-paid jobs, mostly temporary and part-time. This paper therefore looks at how professional mothers in Sri Lanka are socially and structurally constrained in the workplace and how they take decisions on combining motherhood and employment. The researcher used a version of thematic analysis in undertaking the analysis of interview accounts, mothers' narratives about life in the family and at work. Throughout, the paper considers female professionals in the public health sector in Sri Lanka, along with significant family members and the district medical officer. It demonstrates those working women's mothering, primary childcare, available childcare facilities, gendered work place practices and hierarchical structures as major predictors of women's underachievement.

Keywords: employment; motherhood; gender inequality; gender identity; professional women; enterprise development; management; Sri Lanka; social issues; workplace culture; female participation; professional mothers; public health sector; underachievement.

DOI: 10.1504/IJMED.2013.054518

International Journal of Management and Enterprise Development, 2013 Vol.12 No.3, pp.237 - 250

Received: 25 Jan 2012
Accepted: 12 Jan 2013

Published online: 26 Jul 2014 *

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