Back to search

BALANSE-Kjønnsbalanse i toppstillinger og forskningsledelse

Saying Yes and No: The gender dimension of everyday choices in academia

Alternative title: Å si j eller nei: Kjønnsdimensjoner i hverdags avgjørelser i akademia

Awarded: NOK 1.00 mill.

The path to professorship in academia is not only shaped by large structural barriers that women must overcome, but is also littered with many seemingly inconsequential everyday decisions that can have a strong cumulative impact on an individual career trajectory. Decisions about whether or not to travel for a conference, participate in a panel, take on a research leadership role, peer review a book or article, join a committee, take on another supervisory task, and so on all have a gender dimension that may be hard to see, but can have a strong cumulative impact on a career trajectory. It is difficult to decide what to say yes or no to: traveling to a conference might either end up being an expensive distraction, or it might be the decisive factor in cementing a strong professional relationship with a colleague from abroad. Moreover, once a decision has been made, such as to take on the supervision of another student or write a book chapter, further decisions need to be made regarding how to manage the task itself -- how much time to devote, and what constitutes "good enough". Organizational culture can sometimes send mixed signals about what is expected, and different aspects of identity (including how gender interacts with other aspects of the self) can influence how expectations are interpreted, which tasks are appealing, and how much effort is required. This project aims to develop a workshop series that enables organizations to systematically hear how different groups understand organizational culture and their own agency. The workshop will be developed at PRIO to help the organization identify aspects of the organizational culture that might need to be addressed, and subsequently offered to other organizations in BalanseHub. Findings (both with regard to the gendered nature of everyday dilemmas and organizational responses) will be disseminated both at BalanseHub events and through an open access book on Supporting Women on the Path to Professorship.

The path to professorship in academia is not only shaped by large structural barriers that women must overcome, but is also littered with many seemingly inconsequential everyday decisions that can have a strong cumulative impact on an individual career trajectory. Decisions about whether or not to travel for a conference, participate in a panel, take on a research leadership role, peer review a book or article, join a committee, take on another supervisory task, and so on all have a gender dimension that may be hard to see, but can have a strong cumulative impact on a career trajectory. It is difficult to decide what to say yes or no to: traveling to a conference might either end up being an expensive distraction, or it might be the decisive factor in cementing a strong professional relationship with a colleague from abroad. Moreover, once a decision has been made, such as to take on the supervision of another student or write a book chapter, further decisions need to be made regarding how to manage the task itself -- how much time to devote, and what constitutes "good enough". Organizational culture can sometimes send mixed signals about what is expected, and different aspects of identity (including how gender interacts with other aspects of the self) can influence how expectations are interpreted, which tasks are appealing, and how much effort is required. This project aims to develop a workshop series that enables organizations to systematically hear how different groups understand organizational culture and their own agency. The workshop will be developed at PRIO to help the organization identify aspects of the organizational culture that might need to be addressed, and subsequently offered to other organizations in BalanseHub. Findings (both with regard to the gendered nature of everyday dilemmas and organizational responses) will be disseminated both at BalanseHub events and through an open access book on Supporting Women on the Path to Professorship.

Funding scheme:

BALANSE-Kjønnsbalanse i toppstillinger og forskningsledelse