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Who engages in work-family multitasking? A study of Canadian and American workers

This study examines the determinants of work–family multitasking using data from two large national surveys of workers—the 2011 Canadian Work, Stress, and HealthStudy and the 2002 National Study of the Changing Workforce. We find that the following groups—in both surveys—engage in frequent multitasking: (1) individuals with higher education and income; (2) executives and professionals, business owners, the self-employed, and supervisors; (3) those who work at home or some place other than away from home at a fixed location; and (4) those who work long hours, a second job, have job pressure, and receive more work-related contact outside regular work hours, and have more challenging work. Collectively, our findings elaborate on the determinants of multitasking—underscoring the differential and sometimes-unexpected influences of socioeconomic status, job-related demands, resources. Most importantly, our results suggest a remarkable degree of similarity in both the patterns among the determinants and their interrelationships among Canadian and American workers.