A meta-analysis of work-family conflict and various outcomes with a special emphasis on cross-domain versus matching-domain relations

J Occup Health Psychol. 2011 Apr;16(2):151-69. doi: 10.1037/a0022170.


A literature review of studies analyzing work-family conflict and its consequences was conducted, and 427 effect sizes were analyzed meta-analytically. Work-family conflict was analyzed bidirectionally in terms of work interference with family (WIF) and family interference with work (FIW). We assessed 3 categories of potential outcomes: work-related outcomes, family-related outcomes, and domain-unspecific outcomes. Results show that WIF and FIW are consistently related to all 3 types of outcomes. Both types of interrole conflict showed stronger relationships to same-domain outcomes than to cross-domain outcomes. Thus, WIF was more strongly associated with work-related than with family-related outcomes, and FIW was more strongly associated with family-related than with work-related outcomes. In moderator analyses, parenthood could not explain variability in effect sizes. However, time spent at work did moderate the relationships between WIF and family-related outcomes, as well as FIW and domain-unspecific outcomes.

Publication types

  • Meta-Analysis

MeSH terms

  • Conflict, Psychological*
  • Employment / psychology*
  • Family / psychology*
  • Family Relations
  • Humans
  • Parents / psychology
  • Stress, Psychological / etiology
  • Stress, Psychological / psychology
  • Time Factors