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Gender, Family and Career in the Era of Boundarylessness: Determinants and Effects of Intra- and Inter-organizational Mobility

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Changes in patterns of long-term employment make understanding the determinants of different career forms increasingly important to careers research. At the same time, the rise of dual-earner families demands greater attention to the ways in which gender and family characteristics shape careers than has been paid by traditional research. This paper addresses these issues, examining the determinants and consequences of intra-organizational and inter-organizational mobility, using a sample of employees from dual-earner couples. We find significant gender differences in these different types of career mobility, and in the effect of family relations on different forms of mobility. Women experience more inter-organizational mobility, while men experience more intra-organizational mobility. Having more children positively influences men’s intra-organizational mobility, but increases interorganizational mobility for women. Marital instability increases intra-organizational mobility among women, but has no effect among men. Each form of mobility has distinctive effects on objective and subjective indicators of career success for both men and women. Moving between organizations tends to depress earnings, but has no effect on how successful people feel in their careers. Job changes within an organization increase earnings, but have a negative effect on perceived success.

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2003-01-01

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career mobility success; boundaryless careers; gender differences; family

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Required Publisher Statement: Copyright held by Taylor & Francis. Final version published as: Valcour, P. M. & Tolbert, P. S. (2003). Gender, family and career in the era of boundarylessness: Determinants and effects of intra- and inter-organizational mobility. International Journal of Human Resource Management, 14(5), 768-787.
International Journal of Human Resource Management is available online at: http://www.informaworld.com/smpp/. Reprinted with permission. All rights reserved.

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