Tammy Allen is Distinguished University Professor at the University of South Florida.  When Dr. Allen began work on work-family issues in the 1990s, the field was is in its infancy. Her work on the topic helped fuel the explosion of research that has occurred over the past several decades. Her 2000 Journal of Occupational Health Psychology (JOHP) meta-analytic review article helped set an agenda for future research. In addition, her 2001 Journal of Vocational Behavior article “Family-supportive work environments: The role of organizational perceptions” was one of the first studies to develop theory and measurement on the importance of family-specific organizational support that goes beyond specific policies, a topic that remains of considerable interest to researchers and practitioners today.

Dr. Allen’s research includes several streams that are innovative and generative in nature. One extends her early work on the limitations of specific policies such as flexible work arrangements (FWA). Although FWA historically have been commonly viewed as a key organizational response to work-family issues, the research findings with regard to efficacy have been mixed. Through a programmatic line of research that included qualitative reviews, primary research, and meta-analytic review, Dr. Allen and her colleagues identified and tested explanations for the mixed results, yielding a better understanding of when FWA are more or less effective in mitigating work-family conflict. Her work has also played a key role in bringing child and family-related outcomes to the fore within organizational psychology. Traditionally, organizational psychologists focused exclusively on work-related outcomes such job attitudes and performance.

Through research examining connections between work variables (e.g., work demands, work hours) and variables such as family dinners, parent-child interactions, and child health behaviors, the organizational psychology literature on work and family research has been expanded to include consideration of the family side of the work-family equation. She has also helped foster work-family research via a cross-cultural/national lens. For example, her recent meta-analytic work on work-family conflict cross-nationally (recent studies published in Journal of Applied Psychology, Psychological Bulletin, and Journal of Vocational Behavior) is extending theory and helping develop an agenda for future research needs for the global work-family research community. A current research stream is devoted to the development of theory, methodologies, and tools for better understanding work-family conflict from a more temporal, person-centered perspective. This includes examining work-family conflict episodically, incorporating physiological assessments, and use of wearable technology.