Skip to main content

Thank you for visiting You are using a browser version with limited support for CSS. To obtain the best experience, we recommend you use a more up to date browser (or turn off compatibility mode in Internet Explorer). In the meantime, to ensure continued support, we are displaying the site without styles and JavaScript.

Stress survey


Striving for work-life balance can take its toll on your career.

Scientists' work obligations conflict with their personal lives three or more times a week, finds a poll of 4,225 scientists by the Association for Women in Science (AWIS) in Alexandria, Virginia. A third of respondents to the global work–life satisfaction survey said that achieving work–life balance damages their careers. "There's a lot of stress out there; it's global and not gender-specific," says AWIS past-president Joan Herbers, who blames the dissatisfaction in part on rigid tenure timelines and requirements. Extending the tenure clock to allow for birth or adoption, and asking tenure committees to rate candidates on the basis of their publications' impact rather than total number, would ease stress, says Herbers.

Related links

Related links

Related links in Nature Research

Part-time balance

Women in business: Finding a way in

The postdoc dilemma

Beyond the glass ceiling

Related external links

Association for Women in Science

AWIS poll

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Cite this article

Stress survey. Nature 483, 501 (2012).

Download citation


Quick links

Nature Briefing

Sign up for the Nature Briefing newsletter — what matters in science, free to your inbox daily.

Get the most important science stories of the day, free in your inbox. Sign up for Nature Briefing