Development paths of balancing work and family and impact on changes in the health and work ability of municipal and hospital employees

For many of us, work and family are key areas of life. At their best, they are mutually enriching, but the role requirements may be partly contradictory. We are studying the development paths of balancing work and family as well as the impact of working conditions and the family situation on them. We will also look at the impact of challenges in said balance on health, work ability and sickness absences.




The project aims to examine: 

  • What are the development paths in balancing work and family for women and men? 
  • What kind of workload and resource factors, family situation and care responsibilities affect work-family conflicts at different ages? 
  • Do work-family conflicts predict changes in health and perceived work ability or sickness absence during the follow-up period? 

Data and methods

The data include the well-being survey of hospital personnel conducted by the Finnish Institute of Occupational Health and the Helsinki Health Study, a health survey of the employees of the City of Helsinki conducted by the University of Helsinki. In both data sets, we look at a follow-up period of about 10 years. 

Results and impact

As the Finnish population ages, the need for family-friendly practices is emphasized. In the follow-up data, we want to find out how municipal and hospital employees balance work and family and what factors influence this. We also look at the importance of work and family conflicts in terms of mental health symptoms, experiences of pain and changes in work ability and sickness absences. The results will help workplaces find ways to improve the balance of work and family and the well-being of employees at different stages of their careers.

Our experts


University of Helsinki and University of Tampere


The Finnish Work Environment Fund