Scientific journal
European Journal of Natural History
ISSN 2073-4972

GENDER STEREOTYPES IN THE LOCAL LABOR MARKET

Koryakovtseva О.А. 1 Talanov S.L. 1
1 Yaroslavl State Pedagogical University
The authors analyzed various types of gender stereotypes prevalent among the citizens of Yaroslavl. It is concluded that out of nine kinds of gender discrimination traditionally common for the Russian labor market, the following three types of gender discrimination are mostly proliferated in Yaroslavl: “salary inequality”, “lack of women in managing positions”, “obstacles in professional advancement”. It is proved that women’s work in the mind of a large part of the population, regardless of its gender-specific, is estimated lower than men’s one. The gender imbalance is revealed: the major part of men are perceiving women’s low salary as a norm. A substantial part of women feels that their work should be assessed at least at the same level as men’s. In addition, it was found out that the involvement of women in household routine significantly impedes their professional advancement. Moreover, major part of women are even not going to build a career, if everything goes well in their families. For managing positions, women are lack of ambitions and perseverance in targets’ achievement.
The authors analyzed various types of gender stereotypes prevalent among the citizens of Yaroslavl. It is concluded that out of nine kinds of gender discrimination traditionally common for the Russian labor market, the following three types of gender discrimination are mostly proliferated in Yaroslavl: “salary inequality”, “lack of women in managing positions”, “obstacles in professional advancement”. It is proved that women’s work in the mind of a large part of the population, regardless of its gender-specific, is estimated lower than men’s one. The gender imbalance is revealed: the major part of men are perceiving women’s low salary as a norm. A substantial part of women feels that their work should be assessed at least at the same level as men’s. In addition, it was found out that the involvement of women in household routine significantly impedes their professional advancement. Moreover, major part of women are even not going to build a career, if everything goes well in their families. For managing positions, women are lack of ambitions and perseverance in targets’ achievement.
gender discrimination
labor market
women
career
“glass ceiling”

Relevance of research

Positional experts note an increase in all forms of gender discrimination in the labor market. Unfortunately, the labor market of Yaroslavl is not an exception [2].

The results of previously made sociological polls show that the stereotypes, that the most important things for women is family and everything related to it, are still vastly represented in the society. It is appropriate to quote B.S. Turner who noted “… a system of power relations of men over women is that, because of their reproductive role in human societies…” [3].

Considering the foregoing, we have attempted to study gender stereotypes in the local labor market.

Empirical base of research

Object of study – able-bodied population of Yaroslavl (women aged 18 to 54 years old, men aged 18 to 59 years old).

Subject of study – opinion of the citizens of Yaroslavl about the problem of women discrimination in the labor market.

Method of information gathering: survey.

Sample n = 312.

Main method of research implementation: territorial (street) survey.

The mathematical processing of the data has been made with the use of the software: MS-Excel and SPSS-19. The selection of criteria for the processing took place after checking the distribution of the results for each scale for normal distribution. K-Z Kolmogorov-Smirnov criteria has been used to check the normality of distribution. The distribution of more than 30 percent of studied features in the sample deviates from the normal, so to assess the significance of differences Mann-Whitney U-Test has been used; for a correlation analysis – Spearman’s rank correlation coefficient. After calculating the correlation coefficient, we determined p- level of significance.

Materials and methods of research

Theoretical and methodological basis of the study stands on such theories as structuralism, phenomenology, and the dispositional approach, as well as the studies of such authors as Jacqueline Watts [4] and Susan Bordo [1].

Author’s hypothesis:

1. Women’s work in the mind of a large part of population, regardless of its gender-specific, is estimated lower than men’s one. The difference is only in the fact that the major part of men are perceiving women’s low salary as a norm. A substantial part of women feels that their work should be assessed at least at the same level as men’s.

2. The involvement of women in household routine significantly impedes their professional advancement. Moreover, major part of women are even not going to build a career, if everything goes well in their families.

3. For managing positions, women are lack of ambitions and perseverance in targets’ achievement.

Results of research and their discussion

First, we attempted to verify the first hypothesis, that “women’s work is estimated lower than men’s one”.

More than half of respondents (58 %) believe that salaries depend primarily on work experience, qualifications, and not on the gender. On the other hand, 42 % of respondents believe that the salary for equal complexity work will be higher for men.

The more often a woman and her friends/relatives have faced the problem of discrimination in the labor market, the more respondents believe that the salary for equal complexity work will be higher for a man (r = 0,223 with p ≤ 0,05 and r = – 0,238 with p ≤ 0,05). The more seldom they have faced such problems, the more respondents believe that the salary depends primarily on work experience, qualifications, and not on the gender (r = – 0,223 with p ≤ 0,05).

Respondents who answer that a man is easier to get a job, find that the salary for equal complexity work will be higher for a man (r = 0,349 with p ≤ 0,001), and respondents who answer that the labor market has no preference for gender, believe that the salary depends primarily on work experience, qualifications, and not on the gender (r = 0,263 with p ≤ 0,05).

Assuming that the employer prefers men to women, because men are more ambitious, and the fact that women can take maternity leave at any time, the respondents believe that the salary for equal complexity work will be higher for men (r = 0,283 with p ≤ 0,01 and r = 0,331 with p ≤ 0,01).

Thus, Yaroslavl citizens believe that the relationship between salary and gender exists. They assume that women’s work is estimated lower than men’s one. The more women have faced the problem of discrimination in the labor market, the more Yaroslavl citizens believe that the salary for equal complexity work will be higher for men.

Then we tested the hypothesis number 2, that “the family prevents women to build a career”.

The majority of respondents think that the chances of men/women for career growth and advancement depend on working conditions – 45 %, but almost the same percentage – 42 % – believe that the chances are not equal, and men have more chances to grow; 8 % believe that the chances for men/women’s professional advancement are equal; and 5 % of the respondents find the question difficult to answer. Nevertheless, no one thinks that there are more chances for women.

The more respondents think that men have better chances for professional advancement and promotion, the more relevant they consider the issue of discrimination against women in the labor market (r = 0,284 with p ≤ 0,01), and the more the respondents believe that the chances of men/women depend on the working conditions, the less relevant they consider this problem (r = – 0,255 with p ≤ 0,05).

Women are more likely to think, that opportunity for career growth depends on working conditions (U = 620,500 with p ≤ 0,001). The more often women and their friends/relatives have faced the problem of discrimination in the labor market, the more respondents think that men have better chances for professional advancement and promotion (r = 0,372 with p ≤ 0,001 and r = 0,507 with p ≤ 0,001). The more seldom they have faced such a problem, the more respondents believe that the chances of men/women depend on the working conditions (r = – 0,262 with p ≤ 0.05 and r = – 0,403 with p ≤ 0,001).

Men are more confident that they have a better chance for career growth (U = 620,500 with p ≤ 0,001). Those who are not aware of cases of discrimination against women in the labor market, mostly answer that women have better chances for professional advancement and growth (r = 0,325 with p ≤ 0,01).

Assuming that it is easier for men to get a job, respondents answer that men have better chances for career growth and promotion (r = 0,625 with p ≤ 0,001), and if they believe that the woman-candidate has the advantage in front of a man, then they reply, that women have better chances for professional advancement and promotion (r = 0,692 with p ≤ 0,001). Assuming that the labor market has no preference regarding the gender, the respondents answer that the chances of men/women depend on the working conditions (r = 0,514 with p ≤ 0,001).

Respondents who answer that men have greater chances for career growth and advancement, believe that the employer prefers men, because woman can take maternity leave at any moment (r = 0,605 with p ≤ 0.001), and those who are replying, that the chances of men/women in the labor market are equal, find it difficult to answer the question: “What do you think, why the employer often prefers men than women?” (r = 0,240 with p ≤ at 0,05).

Accordingly, if the respondents believe that men have better chances for their professional advancement and promotion, they assume that the salary for equal complexity work will be higher for men (r = 0,253 with p ≤ 0,05).

73 % of respondents believe that women have difficulties with building a career because of the family and the complexity of its alignment with the career, 22 % believe that the difficulties are because of the psychological complexes of women themselves, and only 5 % of respondents believe that difficulties are connected directly with discrimination against women in the companies.

Women are more confident that they are impeded to build a career by their psychological complexes (U = 901,500 with p ≤ 0,001). Not facing the discrimination in the labor market personally, they suggest that women have difficulties with building a career because of the family and the complexity of its alignment with the career (r = 0,225 with p ≤ 0,05). However, there are those who have faced this problem, and they suggest that women are impeded to build a career directly because of discrimination in their companies (r = 0,260 with p ≤ 0,05).

Men are more confident that women have difficulties with building a career because of the family and the complexity of the alignment, and they also are more confident that the discrimination in companies prevents women to build a career (U = 921,000 with p ≤ 0,05 and U = 1034, 000 with p ≤ 0,05). Those who are more aware of cases of discrimination against women in the labor market, respond that women have difficulties with building their career because of their psychological complexes (r = 0,260 with p ≤ 0,05).

If the respondents answer that the employer prefers men, because men are more confident, they believe that women are prevented to build a career because of their psychological complexes (r = 0,322 with p ≤ 0,01). If the respondents answer that the employer prefers men, because women can take maternity leave at any time, they believe that women are prevented to build a career because of their families and the complexity of alignment with the career (r = 0,222 with p ≤ 0,05). Moreover, if the respondents answer that the employer prefers men, because men are predictable, they believe that women are prevented to build a career because of discrimination against women in the companies (r = 0,294 with p ≤ 0,01).

The more respondents believe that women have difficulties with building their career because of their families and the complexity of alignment with the career, the less they believe that women-candidates have an advantage over men in the labor market (r = – 0,212 with p ≤ 0,05).

When answering the question: “Do you agree with the fact that maternity leave is a step back in a woman’s career?”, the respondents mostly believe that maternity leave really has a negative impact on the career of women – 67 %, 24 % find it difficult to answer this question, 6 % believe that maternity leave does not interfere a woman to succeed in her career, and 3 % believe that child care can even be a major undertaking in a woman’s career.

Often women themselves find it more difficult to answer this question than men (U = 876,000 with p ≤ 0,01). They want to believe that maternity leave will affect their professional career in no way.

Men who are not aware of cases of discrimination against women in the labor market, also find it difficult to answer the question about women’s maternity leave (r = 0,392 with p ≤ 0,001). But those who have faced such issues in their life, respond that maternity leave has a negative impact on the career of women (r = – 0,373 with p ≤ 0,001).

Those respondents who believe that a man is easier to get a job also agree the statement above (r = 0,274 with p ≤ 0,01). Respondents who believe that a woman-candidate has an advantage over men in the labor market, answer that maternity leave does not impede a woman to succeed in a career (r = 0,205 with p ≤ 0,05); and those who find it difficult to answer the question, believe that there is no preference for gender (r = 0,230 with p ≤ 0,05) in the labor market.

Of course, the more respondents believe that employers prefer men because women can take maternity leave at any time, the more they respond that maternity leave has a negative impact on a woman’s career (r = 0,236 with p ≤ 0,05). However, the less they think like this, the more difficult they find it to answer the question: “Do you agree with the fact that maternity leave is a step back in women’s career?” (r = – 0,294 with p ≤ 0,01).

Assuming that men and women have an equal chance in professional advancement, the respondents answer that maternity leave does not impede a woman to succeed in her career (r = 0,230 with p ≤ 0,05).

Men and women who think that women are prevented to build a career because of their families and the complexity of alignment with the career, note that maternity leave has a negative impact on the career of women (r = 0,209 with p ≤ 0,05).

Based on the foregoing, we can conclude that the chances of men and women to advance their careers depend on the working conditions.

Those respondents, who believe that there is no preference regarding the gender in the labor market, answer that the chances of men and women for career growth depend on the working conditions.

The main reasons for lack of demand for women in employment cause the problems of their professional advancements. The respondents, suggesting that employers prefer men because men are more confident themselves, believe that women have difficulties with building their career because of their orientation on birth giving. Most men and women who believe that that women are prevented to build a career because of their families and the complexity of alignment with the career, think that the more children a woman is planning to have, the more maternity leave and child care will constantly distract a woman in building a successful career.

Then we have checked the hypothesis number 3, “For leadership positions, women are lack of ambitions and perseverance in targets’ achievement”.

If getting a new job, your boss is likely to be a man – 31 % of respondents, a woman – 5 %, 22 % do not care who will be their boss, but the majority – 42 % – say that it all depends on the situation and the first impression and from the level of professionalism of the boss. According to respondents, the male-boss is better than a female-boss because he is more confident, it is easier to find a common language, he is more balanced, ambitious and more effective, he will take a right decision in critical situations. Those who prefer to see their boss as a woman believe that female-boss is better because she works with enthusiasm, involves emotions, kindness, and care.

Women are more confident that they want to see their boss as a man (U = 704,500 with p ≤ 0,001). Facing with discrimination in the labor market, the woman and her friends/relatives still believe that they would like to have a male-boss (r = – 0,334 with r ≤ 0,001 and r = – 0,243 with p ≤ 0,05). This is affected by stereotypes regarding to the boss’ gender. The more women and their friends/relatives have not faced the discrimination in the labor market, the more respondents believe that the person, they would like to see as their boss, will depend on the situation, the first impression, the level of his/her professionalism (r = 0,209 with p ≤ 0,05 and with r = 0,293 p ≤ 0,001).

Men are more confident in the fact that the selection of the boss’ gender depends on the situation and the first impression (U = 739,500 with p ≤ 0,001). Those who are not aware of cases of discrimination against women in the labor market, believe that they would like to see their boss as a man (r = 0,260 with p ≤ 0,05).

Respondents aged 31-40 are more confident in the fact that the selection of the boss’ gender depends on the situation, the first impression, the level of professionalism of the boss (U = 286,000 with p ≤ 0,05).

30 % of respondents think that women have lack of self-confidence to occupy the managing positions, 22 % think that not skilled enough to represent themselves and their ideas correctly, and 22 % think that sometimes they are not enough determined, 15 % consider that they are not rigid enough, and 11 % think that they don’t have enough of psychological stability. As you can see, opinions are different.

Those who respond that women do not have enough of psychological stability to occupy the managing positions, consider the problem of discrimination of women in the labor market as more relevant (r = 0,523 with p ≤ 0,001).

Women are more confident in the fact that they have lack of self-confidence to occupy the managing positions (U = 525,000 with p ≤ 0,001). The more the woman and her friends/relatives have faced with the problem of discrimination in the labor market, the more respondents believe that to women do not have enough of psychological stability (r = 0,249 with p ≤ 0,05 and r = 0,293 with p ≤ 0,01) and self-confidence (r= – 0,563 with р ≤ 0,001 and r= – 0,399 with р ≤ 0,001) to occupy the managing positions.

Men are more confident in the fact that women have lack of rigidity (U = 828,500 with p ≤ 0,01) and psychological stability (U = 849,000 with p ≤ 0,01) to occupy the managing positions. Those who are more aware of cases of discrimination against women in the labor market, suggest that women have lack of self-confidence to occupy the managing positions (r = 0,237 with p ≤ 0,05).

Of course, those who thinks that the employer prefers men, because men are more self-confident, respond that women have lack of self-confidence for managing positions (r = 0,234 with p ≤ 0,05). But those who consider that the employer prefers men, because men are more functional and psychologically stable, respond that women have not enough determination for managing positions (r = 0,230 with p ≤ 0,05).

Respondents, who suggest that women have difficulties with building their career because of their psychological complexes, believe that women have lack of self-confidence for managing positions (r = 0,204 with p ≤ 0,05).

The more respondents want to see their boss as a man, the more they find that woman is not enough self-confident for the managing positions (r = 0,336 with p ≤ 0,01).

Respondents aged 18-30 are more confident in the fact that a woman has not enough of psychological stability, ambition, determination to occupy the managing positions (U = 422,500 with p ≤ 0,01).

Thus, only 5 % of respondents would like to their boss as a woman. The majority prefers to see its boss as a more ambitious and resolute person. Respondents believe that all these qualities are more inherent to a man.

Conclusion

In the framework of the study, it is found out that for the majority of the citizens of Yaroslavl is still inherent to gender stereotypes. Only a small part of the women surveyed – 7 % – indicated that they faced this kind of discrimination, such as “sexual harassment in the workplace”. 17 % of women indicated that they faced discrimination during the employment. It is concluded that out of nine kinds of gender discrimination traditionally common for the Russian labor market, the following three types of gender discrimination are mostly proliferated in Yaroslavl: “salary inequality”, “lack of women in managing positions”, “obstacles in professional advancement”.