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Informal and socially situated learning: gendered practices and becoming women church leaders

Informal and socially situated learning: gendered practices and becoming women church leaders This paper aims to explore how informal and socially situated learning and gendered practices impact the experiences of women learning to lead and the gendered dynamics inherent in women’s lived experiences of learning.Design/methodology/approachThe authors adopt a becoming ontology and a social constructionist perspective. A qualitative approach guided by feminist principles facilitated the surfacing of rich and reflective accounts from women leaders. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 18 women leader priests in Canada.FindingsThe authors highlight how gendered practices are concealed and revealed through informal learning processes and illustrate this through two themes, informal and socially situated learning as inductive and gendered, and the jolt of gender discrimination in informal learning.Research limitations/implicationsWhile each account from the women church leaders is highly valued in its own right and the women’s stories have generated new insights, the overall data set is small and not generalizable. Future research should explore further the types of informal learning initiatives and systems, which acknowledge and best support women learning to lead in (gendered) organizations. It should also explore how informal learning informs leadership styles in this and other contexts.Originality/valueThe research demonstrates how informal learning experiences can serve as a site for invisible and unaccounted for gender bias and inform the becoming of women leaders. The research also advances the limited body of work that seeks to better understand the gender dynamics of women’s leadership in faith-based organizations. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Gender in Management An International Journal Emerald Publishing

Informal and socially situated learning: gendered practices and becoming women church leaders

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References (47)

Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
© Emerald Publishing Limited
ISSN
1754-2413
DOI
10.1108/gm-03-2019-0041
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

This paper aims to explore how informal and socially situated learning and gendered practices impact the experiences of women learning to lead and the gendered dynamics inherent in women’s lived experiences of learning.Design/methodology/approachThe authors adopt a becoming ontology and a social constructionist perspective. A qualitative approach guided by feminist principles facilitated the surfacing of rich and reflective accounts from women leaders. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 18 women leader priests in Canada.FindingsThe authors highlight how gendered practices are concealed and revealed through informal learning processes and illustrate this through two themes, informal and socially situated learning as inductive and gendered, and the jolt of gender discrimination in informal learning.Research limitations/implicationsWhile each account from the women church leaders is highly valued in its own right and the women’s stories have generated new insights, the overall data set is small and not generalizable. Future research should explore further the types of informal learning initiatives and systems, which acknowledge and best support women learning to lead in (gendered) organizations. It should also explore how informal learning informs leadership styles in this and other contexts.Originality/valueThe research demonstrates how informal learning experiences can serve as a site for invisible and unaccounted for gender bias and inform the becoming of women leaders. The research also advances the limited body of work that seeks to better understand the gender dynamics of women’s leadership in faith-based organizations.

Journal

Gender in Management An International JournalEmerald Publishing

Published: Feb 18, 2020

Keywords: Women leaders; Church leaders; Learning; Human resource development; gender; Leadership

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