A first look at parental work schedules and children’s well-being in contemporary China

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This article examines the association between parental work schedules and children’s well-being using a 2014 sample of first-graders in Shanghai, China (N = 2282), a society undergoing rapid economic and social changes. Approximately one-third of the sampled parents worked nonstandard hours in 2014. Propensity score matching analysis results show that children whose fathers worked evening and night schedules had worse internalizing behavior than those whose fathers worked a at standard daytime schedule. In addition, children whose fathers worked nights or irregular schedules displayed poorer academic performance than their peers whose fathers worked a standard daytime schedule. Maternal nonstandard work schedules were associated with worse academic performance but better behavioral outcomes. These associations were particularly pronounced for families with rural residential status and families in the bottom-third of the income distribution.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)286-304
Number of pages19
JournalCommunity, Work and Family
Issue number3
StatePublished - May 26 2020


  • Children’s well-being
  • China
  • externalizing behaviors
  • internalizing behaviors
  • parental nonstandard work schedules

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Development
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • General Social Sciences


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