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Gender inequality in the work environment: a study of private research organizations in India

Gender inequality in the work environment: a study of private research organizations in India PurposeSince liberalization in the 1990s, India has witnessed a growth in the number of educated middle-class women in professions. However, there are few women in leadership positions and decision-making bodies. While the earlier notion of the ideal woman as homemaker has been replaced by one which idealizes women of substance, a woman’s role in the family continues to be pivotal and is even viewed as central in defining Indian culture. The purpose of this paper is to analyze how and to what extent gender inequalities are reproduced in the organizations employing educated professionals.Design/methodology/approachBased on the perspective that gender is socially constructed, this paper analyzes gender inequality in Indian organizations through semi-structured interviews of men and women scientists in two private pharmaceutical laboratories.FindingsThe findings show reproduction of a gendered normative order through two types of norms and practices: one, norms and practices that favor men and second, socio-cultural norms that devalue women in public spaces which help to maintain masculinity in the workplace. Although these practices might be found elsewhere in the world, the manner in which they are enacted reflects national cultural norms.Originality/valueThe paper highlights how various norms and practices enacted in the specific Indian socio-cultural context construct and maintain masculinity at workplace depriving opportunities to professional women which affect their rise to leadership positions. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Equality Diversity and Inclusion: An International Journal Emerald Publishing

Gender inequality in the work environment: a study of private research organizations in India

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References (71)

Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
Copyright © Emerald Group Publishing Limited
ISSN
2040-7149
DOI
10.1108/EDI-04-2016-0029
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

PurposeSince liberalization in the 1990s, India has witnessed a growth in the number of educated middle-class women in professions. However, there are few women in leadership positions and decision-making bodies. While the earlier notion of the ideal woman as homemaker has been replaced by one which idealizes women of substance, a woman’s role in the family continues to be pivotal and is even viewed as central in defining Indian culture. The purpose of this paper is to analyze how and to what extent gender inequalities are reproduced in the organizations employing educated professionals.Design/methodology/approachBased on the perspective that gender is socially constructed, this paper analyzes gender inequality in Indian organizations through semi-structured interviews of men and women scientists in two private pharmaceutical laboratories.FindingsThe findings show reproduction of a gendered normative order through two types of norms and practices: one, norms and practices that favor men and second, socio-cultural norms that devalue women in public spaces which help to maintain masculinity in the workplace. Although these practices might be found elsewhere in the world, the manner in which they are enacted reflects national cultural norms.Originality/valueThe paper highlights how various norms and practices enacted in the specific Indian socio-cultural context construct and maintain masculinity at workplace depriving opportunities to professional women which affect their rise to leadership positions.

Journal

Equality Diversity and Inclusion: An International JournalEmerald Publishing

Published: Apr 18, 2017

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