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Configurations of boundary management practices among knowledge workers

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Stefanie ReissnerORCiD



This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (CC BY 4.0).


While the literature in relation to managing the work-nonwork boundary retains a strong focus on the consistent use of segmenting or integrating boundary management practices, recent studies indicate that individuals’ behaviours are often inconsistent. To add to this emerging strand of research, this article is set in the context of flexible working to examine how knowledge workers use time, space and objects to demarcate the work-nonwork boundary. The analysis identifies three configurations of boundary management practices with differing degrees of inconsistency in the use of time, space and objects. Its contribution is three-fold: (1) it provides an original, systematic exploration of boundary management practices that do not represent consistency; (2) it creates a framework within which differing degrees of inconsistency in people’s boundary management practices can be observed; and (3) it demonstrates new and crucial differences between distinct inconsistent approaches to demarcating the work-nonwork boundary.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Reissner SC, Izak M, Hislop D

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Work, Employment and Society

Year: 2021

Volume: 35

Issue: 2

Pages: 296-315

Print publication date: 01/04/2021

Online publication date: 23/12/2020

Acceptance date: 02/08/2020

Date deposited: 07/08/2020

ISSN (print): 0950-0170

ISSN (electronic): 1469-8722

Publisher: Sage Publications Ltd


DOI: 10.1177/0950017020968375


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