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Flexible Work Arrangements and Intentions of Unemployed Women in Cyprus: A Planned Behaviour Model


  • An earlier version of this manuscript was accepted by the 2008 Academy of Management Conference among the Best Papers. The research is part of the ongoing project ‘EQUAL: Channels of Access’, which is co-funded by the European Union (50%) and the Government of Cyprus (50%). We thank colleagues at the Cyprus Productivity Centre for allowing access to their database, and all women who participated in this research.


Drawing from the theory of planned behaviour, we use 18 focus groups with 113 unemployed women and 150 mail questionnaires to explore whether and how unemployed Cypriot women's subjective norms, attitudes, perceived behavioural control and job versus career aspirations influence their intentions to adopt employee- and employer-driven flexible work arrangements. To analyse the information gathered, we used a combination of content analysis, an external panel of practitioners and academics, principal components analysis, and regressions. Results show that women's positive attitudes towards child-caring and self-enhancement and their subjective norms of organizational inflexibility were positively related mainly with intentions to adopt employee-driven flexible work arrangements. Further, women who found childcare support and employer requirements limiting were more interested in telework; the latter were also more interested in temporary work. Finally, women's career aspirations were related with weekend work and telework, whilst their job aspirations were associated with temporary work. Results raise issues for employers and policy-makers in Cyprus, and possibly other southern European countries facing similar challenges, in supporting women to become fully integrated in the labour market.