Is senior management in American and Australian Universities still gendered? (NB on conference program, paper is titled "Top and senior women working within universities in 2006 still experience more difficulties than their male peers".)

Kerry Tilbrook

Research output: Book chapter/Published conference paperConference paperpeer-review

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Abstract

Top and senior women working within universities in 2006 still experience more difficulties than their male peers. This is due to the continued organisational barriers, structural impediments and the difficulties of functioning as women senior and top managers and academics within a 'man's world'. Today the recognition of these extra difficulties experienced by successful women is often dismissed, both by some of these women who have 'made it' and many senior men. This paper is based on research for a Ph. D. thesis that used 24 interviews with top and senior women to explore their experiences of 'life at the top' and also their suggestions for improving conditions for other women who wish to participate in the important task of shaping the strategic direction and governance of universities in a complex era of increasing economic and political uncertainty.It is argued here that the slow but increasing representation of women and other minorities at senior levels enables the possibility of bringing a range of different perspectives to the traditional male-dominated university culture. Due to their experience as 'outsiders' from 'within' women and other minorities are positioned to make a difference due to their willingness to embrace strategies that may challenge the existing status quo and support less traditional organisational cultures.Despite the outward success of EEO/AA initiatives there is an ever present danger that these initiatives are being diluted in the movement towards ever increased managerialism and corpratisation within Australian universities. These trends are in danger of re-constructing and solidifying the mainstream organisational culture in universities which remains so unattractive to many talented academic and managerial women.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationChange in Climate? Prospects for gender equity in universities
EditorsColleen Chesterman
Place of PublicationUTS, Sydney
PublisherATN WEXDEV
Pages1-19
Number of pages19
ISBN (Electronic)1863658696
Publication statusPublished - 2006
EventAustralian Technology Network (ATN) Women's Executive Development (WEXDEV) Conference - Adelaide, SA, Australia
Duration: 11 Apr 200613 Apr 2006

Conference

ConferenceAustralian Technology Network (ATN) Women's Executive Development (WEXDEV) Conference
Country/TerritoryAustralia
Period11/04/0613/04/06

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