Transformative Collaborations: How a Motherscholar Research Collective Survived and Thrived during COVID-19

Colleen C. Myles-Baltzly, Helen K. Ho, Ivanna Richardson, Jennifer Greene-Rooks, Katharina A. Azim, Kathryn E. Frazier, Maggie Campbell-Obaid, Meike Eilert, Stacey R. Lim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


The COVID-19 global pandemic has highlighted and exacerbated existing gender-based inequities in the workforce. A research collective developed by academic mothers with young children (?motherscholars?) emerged as a solution to address some of the constraints particularly faced by mothers in academia. The Motherscholar Collective was formed to research the effects of the pandemic on the work and personal lives of academic mothers with young children. Focus group interviews of participants explored how the Motherscholar Collective has provided relief from the sources of threat generated and amplified by the pandemic. Findings showed that participation in the Collective was transformative. Key themes, including flexibility, collaboration, validation, and empowerment, reflect how the Collective contributed to motherscholars? sense of authenticity as scholars by facilitating a harmonious integration of their professional and personal identities. The resulting implications for academic workplaces suggest opportunities for institutional improvement toward the end of transformational empowerment for motherscholars in academia.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)197-214
Number of pages18
JournalInternational Perspectives in Psychology: Research, Practice, Consultation
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 1 2021
Externally publishedYes


  • COVID-19
  • academia
  • gender inequities
  • identity
  • motherscholars


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