Guide to this List of Resources

Below are helpful links to various institutional and governmental information about family leave policies arranged into several categories by type. Scroll over a resource and click for a link to the original source.

Please note that some links may not work in all browsers. If a page does not load, cut and paste it into a different browser (e.g. Chrome, Safari, Explorer, Firefox).

This list is by no means exhaustive. It is a starting place. If you would like to share a resource, please include any pertinent citation information and use the contact form at the bottom of this page.

Special thanks to Mari Castellano for her assistance in assembling this list.


Institutional/System Policies and Best Practices:

Working Mother magazine article: “Balancing the Work Life Ledger” explaining what criteria make the best companies for working mothers & parents:

Yale University and University of Wisconsin Hospitals & Clinics  were only academic institutions to make the list in 2016.


University of California Faculty Family Friendly Edge& their Resources page

University of Colorado Boulder Strategies for Effecting Gender Equity and Institutional Change 

University of Virginia 2004 study on impact of parental leave

Hampton-Sydney College, VA Maternity and Paternity Leave policy

Bowdoin College leave course reduction policy

Boston College (2014) “The New Dad” study by Center for Work and Family (paternity leave)

Boston College Defining Paternity Leave 

Ohio University (2012) Study on Best Practices 

University of Washington additional parenting supports

Indiana University, Chemistry department accommodations 

Susan Abramson, Yale WorkLife Coordinator presentation of various academic institutional practices

Academic Institution Leave Policies:

A PostDoc’s Guide to Parental, Maternity, and Paternity Leave, and Parents in the Pipeline (National PostDoc Association)

Faculty Parental Leave Policies, crowd-sourced

Knowledge and Perceptions of Family Leave Policies Among Female Faculty in Academic Medicine

Parental Leave Policies for Top 50 Public Universities (Excel spreadsheet) 

Yale Leave Policies (p. 125) 

Georgetown Leave Policy

AAUP Resources and examples policies for U of Virginia, Cornell, Michigan State, U of California, and Boston U

Big 10 Parental Leave policies

Middlebury College

Wellesley College

Princeton University

Harvard Law School

Title IX and Pregnancy:

The Pregnant Scholar (information and advocacy page)


Corporate Family Leave Policies:

Crowd-sourced maternity leave policy database

Etsy’s policy

Workplace Care article

Information Technology (IT) industry

Business Insider 2015: Companies with Best Parental Leave Policies

Working Mother Magazine Best Leave Policies 

Twitch Parental Leave Policy

Facebook family leave policy

City and State Family Leave Policies/Laws:

New York

San Francisco


Outside of the United States Policies/Laws:

Comparing 21 countries (2008) 


Eastern Europe



Hong Kong


Support, Additional Data and General Resources:

AAUW 2006 report on pregnancy in the academy

Academic Mamas Facebook page (by invitation only)

Workplace Care (resources)

National Partnership for Women & Families

The White House, Economics of Paid and Unpaid Leave 

Tools for Change


Books about Family Leave and Related Topics:

Do Babies Matter? by Wolfinger, Goulden & Mason 

Unfinished Business by Slaughter


Academic Op-Eds on Pregnancy, Parental Leave, Caregiving:

The Chronicle of Higher Education, various articles:

Times Higher Education, various articles:

Vitae, various articles:

Inside Higher Ed

University Affairs/Affaires Universitaires

Harvard Business Review

Op-Eds on Pregnancy, Parental Leave, and Caregiving:

Professors pay more for childcare than students pay for tuition by Noah Percy (Apr 2019, Columbia Spectator Daily)

It’s time to make paid parental leave happen nationally, and here’s how to do it (June 2017, Brookings Institute)

How Can Universities Create a Carer-Friendly Culture? by Marie-Pierre Moreau (June 2017, The Guardian)

Family-Friendly Policy That’s Friendliest to Male Professors by Justin Wolfers (June 2016, The NY Times)

There’s Some Way to Go Before Universities Become Truly Parent-Friendly (August 2017)

How Much Paid Family Leave is Enough? by Rachel Nania (August 2017)

Women did everything right. Then work got “greedy.” On gender pay gap and family-unfriendliness. by Claire Cain Miller (April 2019, New York Times)


Academia and Maternity Leave by PoweredByOsteons (assistant professor):

Work-Life Balance by The Professor Is In

How does maternity/parental leave work at your college/university? on Reddit ask Academia

Postdoc Parental Leave Policies by Dynamic Ecology

Academia Has a Mom Problem by Megan Rivers-Moore

Being a Caregiver with an Academic Career, by Timothy A. Lepcyzk


Primary Research Articles about Impact of Parental Leave:

(on adult or infant health, on productivity, on child development – and related)

The maternal health outcomes of paid maternity leave: A systematic review

The Impact of Parental Leave Duration and Later Wages 

Maternal Leave Policies and Vaccination Coverage 

Maternal Leave and Breastfeeding (Canada)

Return to work and breastfeeding

The effects of paid maternity leave: Evidence from Temporary Disability Insurance

Knowledge and Perceptions of Family Leave Policies Among Female Faculty in Academe Medicine

Academic Life and Motherhood: Variations by institutional type (Wolf-Wendell & Ward 2009)

Parents in the Pipeline (The Pregnant Scholar)

Women negatively judged if they take maternity leave, and if they don’t (Science Daily)

Researchers with children: A disadvantage in academia

Family Friendly Best Practices:

(anything beyond what is captured in the categories above)

Child Care


Elder and Adult Care

Health Advocate “Caregiving: Impact on the Workplace”

Work & Elder Care

Self Care

Psychology Today, “7 Steps”

World Health Organization


Fortune Magazine, “Pet-Friendly Workplaces”

Anthropology of Care/Giving, ongoing bibliography:

Suffering in a Productive World 

Caregiving as a Cultural System

For the Sake of Others: Recripocal Webs of Obligation and the Pursuit of Transplantation as a Caring Act

Labors of Love

American Indian Family Caregiving

Grad Student Policies:

Articles or posts outlining issues with being a grad student and caregiving issues (e.g. not covered by FMLA, inflexible policies that can suspend or end research or funding, loss of housing, loss/refund financial aid, loss of health insurance, no access to advising, email, labs, library, and may or may not be protected from time limits for matriculation):

Grad Student Leave Policies:

FMLA for Grad Students:

AHA ( put together an amazing list of graduate student family leave policies for more than 100 universities and colleges. The link is here:







Bibliography and Research Resources

Abramson, Susan. “Work-Life Best Practices in Higher Education.” Powerpoint presentation, Yale University, 13-10-06.

Gahn, Sandra and Susan Carlson. “Breaking the Norms: Measuring the Impact of New Policies.” Powerpoint presentation, Iowa State University, 11-10-2008.

Gault, Barbara, Heidi Hartmann, Ariane Hegewisch, Jessica Milli, and Lindsey Reichlin. Paid Parental Leave in the United States. Report. Institute for Women’s Policy Research, U.S. Department of Labor Women’s Bureau. 2014.

Jackson, Rebecca A., MD, Sigrid Garner, MD, MPH, Leah N. Torres, MD, Megan J. Huchko, MD, Marya G. Zlatnik, MD, and Joan C. Williams, JD. “My Obstetrician Got Me Fired: How Work Notes Can Harm Pregnant Patients and What to Do About It.” Obstetrics & Gynecology, January 5, 2015, 1-5. DOI: 10.1097/AOG.0000000000000971.

Tower, Leslie E. 2015. Changing Work/Life Policy in Institutions of Higher Education: A Case Study. In Family-Friendly Policies and Practices in Academe. Erin K. Anderson and Catherine Richards Solomon, eds. Blue Ridge Summit, PA: Lexington Books, 2015.

Tower, L.E. and L.M. Dilks. “Work/Life Satisfaction Policy in ADVANCE Universities: Assessing Levels of Flexibility.” Journal of Diversity in Higher Education, (2015, June 1).

UC Hastings College of the Law. Effective Policies and Programs for Retention and Advancement of Women in Academia. Worklife Law, 2012.

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