Greening Work–Life Balance: Connecting Work, Caring and the Environment
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The emerging field of green work–life balance (growing from the work–life balance and sustainability fields) largely centres its analysis around the organisational benefits of green work–life balance policies. Consequently, it often focuses on the way in which individual behaviours can reduce the environmental footprint of the organisation. This paper argues that the gendered assumptions underpinning the research mean that the nascent field of green work–life balance has failed to theorise the way in which personal, community, environmental and organisational needs interconnect. Specifically, it has failed to address the way in which ‘care’—for people and the environment—lacks recognition because of gender norms of carework. This paper proposes a theoretical framework of green work–life balance that centres both environmental and people care. This theoretical framework can be used to inform both research and practice, including the way in which unions bargain and campaign for green clauses and just transition.