Re:Gender works to end gender inequity and discrimination against girls and women by exposing root causes and advancing research-informed action. Working with multiple sectors and disciplines, we are shaping a world that demands fairness across difference.
Researchers from the universities of Leicester and Essex looked into the concept of "adulting," which is defined as the attempt by people to be seen as mature and responsible, professionally and socially, and, when looking at a London hedge fund, found that women faced problems at every stage of adult life – from getting started in the company to keeping credibility among colleagues after giving birth.
By contrast, young male staff were given more opportunities to settle into corporate life, and suffered fewer dilemmas in juggling work and parenthood, found Jo Brewis, Professor of Organisation and Consumption at the University of Leicester School of Management, and Dr Kat Riach, Senior Lecturer in Management at Essex Business School at the University of Essex.
"Our in-depth research into life for male and female workers at a busy hedge fund showed women are never the right age in organisational terms," said Professor Brewis, who has borrowed the phrase 'never the right age' from fellow management experts Professor Wendy Loretto and Dr Colin Duncan from the University of Edinburgh Business School, who originally coined it. Professor Brewis and Dr Riach gathered evidence in late 2010 through 53 interviews with men and women at the fund aged between 25 and 37, and 150 hours of observation.
They found that women's problems began when they entered the company. Unlike their male colleagues they were given little or no informal guidance and training as new members of a team.
While opinions on diversity are wide-ranging, the facts are pretty clear. Study after study has shown women to be more risk-averse than men, across a range of activities, including the Wall Street businesses of investing and trading. Study after study has shown that women place greater emphasis on interpersonal relationships, and on nurturing them, than do men. And studies show that female managers are less focused on winning in the short term and are more long-term-oriented than their male counterparts.
Do any of these sound like qualities the big banks could use more of?
Perhaps as a result of the complementarity of differing approaches of men and women, numerous studies, including the annual Women Matter surveys by McKinsey & Co. and research by Catalyst, show that more diverse management teams are more successful management teams; they deliver higher returns for shareholders across industries, including banking. Academic research indicates that more diverse teams outperform even more capable management teams, a real “wow” of a finding.
How can this be? Because adding one more PhD in applied mathematics to a team already full of them has much less effect than adding someone with expertise in, say, managing people or in IT systems. If diversity of color and gender is a proxy for diversity of experience, then adding that diversity to management teams helps bring different perspectives to the table.
To gauge the impact of the popular Atkins-style diets on women's hearts, researchers in Greece turned to a food survey completed by more than 43,000 women in Sweden. The women, who were between 30 and 49 years old, recorded the frequency and quantities of food they ate over six months in 1991 and 1992.
Using the survey, researchers calculated which women were eating the least amount of carbohydrates and the most amount of protein. The women were then followed for 15 years on average to see who became diagnosed with cardiovascular disease. The women's food habits were not tracked long-term but did provide researchers a snapshot in time.
The study found 1,270 women developed heart problems. The incidence of cardiovascular disease was 62% higher among women who consumed the least carbohydrates and the most protein, when compared to women who weren’t regularly eating a low carbohydrate, high protein diet. By eating such a diet, the researchers conclude an additional four to five women out of 10,000 develop cardiovascular disease each year.
The findings, published Monday in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, point to a need for more aggressive political action and strategies for reducing smoking by a new generation of men and women in all U.S. states, researchers said.
"Yes, we are making progress in reducing death rates for lung cancer, but there is really a new epidemic and we have to pay attention to increasing death rates in women," said Ahmedin Jemal, the study's lead author and a researcher at the American Cancer Society in Atlanta, Georgia.
Lung cancer currently accounts for about one in four cancer deaths in the U.S., making it the top cancer killer, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
But lung cancer deaths among both men and women have been steadily declining since the 1990s, a trend usually credited to public health campaigns and state policies, like cigarette taxes and smoking bans, designed to encourage people to quit smoking and discourage young people from starting.
Previous research has shown that women born in 1950 and afterwards are an exception to the recent decline.
Ultra-orthodox, or haredi, women are joining the Israeli labor force in increasing numbers and many are choosing to work in technology, attracted in part by the industry’s willingness to accommodate their religious lifestyle.
Ultra-orthodox, or haredi, women are joining the Israeli labor force in increasing numbers and many are choosing to work in technology, attracted in part by the industry’s willingness to accommodate their religious lifestyle. While that has helped keep jobs that might otherwise have gone offshore, their husbands’ joblessness is a drag on economic growth, according to the Bank of Israel and the International Monetary Fund.
“A continued increase in the share of the population which does not participate in the workforce cannot continue forever, and so will have to stop,” Bank of Israel Governor Stanley Fischer said earlier this year. The imbalance has to be corrected for the health of the economy, he added. The central bank predicts growth will slow to 3.1 percent this year from 4.8 percent in 2010 and 2011.
While the ultra-Orthodox make up about 8 percent to 10 percent of the population, they will represent 17 percent of working-age Israelis in 20 years because of their high birth rate, according to the bank. By the late 2050s they will account for a quarter of the population, a March 9 IMF report found.
As it has done at least once a decade for the past 40 years, the media seems intent on pitting women against each other in a "Having it All" debate about work inside and outside the home. Author and organizer Ellen Bravo explains why the discussion defies reality.
When Anne Marie Slaughter wrote her article for Atlantic magazine on “Why Women Still Can’t Have It All,” describing her decision to leave a top job for Hilary Clinton at the State Department, she acknowledged that she’s talking about a small sliver of elite women. “Millions of other working women face much more difficult life circumstances,” Slaughter noted.
But neither Atlantic, nor the New York Times, nor any of the other major media outlets that has run or commented on Slaughter’s article, spotlight these working mothers—the majority, in fact—who are struggling with daily hardships because our country does not provide basic policies that help value families in the workplace.
These women are not thinking about “having it all,” they’re worried about losing it all—their jobs, their children’s health, their families’ financial stability—because of the regular conflicts that arise between being a good employee and a responsible parent.
The paper, “Gender, Internet experience, Internet identification and Internet anxiety: a ten year follow-up,” appears in Cyberpsychology, Behavior and Social Networking. Dr. Richard Joiner is the lead author.
"In our previous research we had found no gender differences in the use of the Internet for communication, whereas in the current study we have found that females use the Internet for communication than males and were using social network sites more than males."
As the study authors point out, the Internet has changed considerably since their 2002 look, with the introduction of Facebook, Twitter and deluge of smartphones. Interestingly, some theorists claimed early on that technology advancements would lessen gender differences and that the Internet would be an equalizer, but these authors have found otherwise.
Women were more attracted to social networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter and were significantly more likely to use email and telephone over the web than males; males were more likely than females to use newsgroups, gaming and gambling sites.
First, thanks to Anne-Marie Slaughter for peeling the band-aid off an open wound of American womanhood. It’s our dirty little secret: balancing work and family is still impossible for elite American women because of the way we structure work, family, love, marriage, careers, masculinity, and dignity.
Yes. It’s that bad. Fifteen years ago, when I began to write Unbending Gender: Why Family and Work Conflicts and What To Do About It, I thought that all we needed to do was to reshape work and careers. The key problem for women, I pointed out, is that workplaces still are designed around an ideal worker who starts to work in early adulthood and works, full time and full force, for forty years without a break, taking no time off for childbearing, childrearing, or anything else. The result is a clash of social ideals. The ideal worker norm clashes with the norm of parental care: the widespread and uncontroversial sense that children need and deserve time with their parents.
The solution is to reshape workplaces around the values we hold in family life. Careers need to be more flexible, such that career breaks do not spell career doom. Hours expectations need to be more flexible, such that a failure to work “full time” does not derail one’s career. Face time needs to end, allowing people to work when and where they need to, so long as the work gets done. Each of these ideas has subsequently been further developed. Here are twogood examples.
Coaching my daughter Sasha’s basketball team is one of those times when I just get to be “Dad.” I snag rebounds, run drills, and have a little fun. More importantly, I get to watch Sasha and her teammates improve together, start thinking like a team, and develop self-confidence.
Any parent knows there are few things more fulfilling than watching your child discover a passion for something. And as a parent, you’ll do anything to make sure he or she grows up believing she can take that ambition as far as she wants; that your child will embrace that quintessentially American idea that she can go as far as her talents will take her.
But it wasn’t so long ago that something like pursuing varsity sports was an unlikely dream for young women in America. Their teams often made do with second-rate facilities, hand-me-down uniforms, and next to no funding.
FastCompany profiles high-achieving women from the world's largest companies, innovative startups, philanthropic organizations, government, and the arts combined forces to change the lives of girls and women everywhere.