This is a lecture by Ann Orloff that was given at the UNSW last year. She is working on a new book called Farewell to Maternalism - her field of study is social policy, care work and gender, and she gives a brief history of care and gender in terms of the work/life balance: http://www.abc.net.au/tv/fora/stories/2009/10/21/2720407.htm#
Whilst I'm interested that this topic is studied at high levels, I'm disappointed she doesn't really have any solutions. The most interesting part for me is comparisons between countries- we can measure and compare workplace participation, women at levels of govt and on boards, longevity and rates of infant mortality, maternal depression, access to day care etc. Surely, as Michael Moore says in Sicko (which I watched this week - about the US health system - which is appalling), can't we just adopt the best practice - see what works best elsewhere and then copy their policies? Are there any consequences to the seemingly best practice policies of Scandinavian countries and France etc, eg, that women are not employed in jobs that require fulltime workers? If anyone knows of studies in this, or have any first hand experience, or even word of mouth, I'd be interested to hear.