It’s not just a numbers game: revisiting critical mass theory to explain gender equality in organizational leadership

Anne Ross-Smith, Colleen Chesterman

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference proceeding contributionpeer-review

Abstract

For many years the province of gender scholars and equity policy regulators in the public sector interest in the lack of proportional representation of women on corporate boards and in senior leadership in developed economies has recently found its way into mainstream management and organizational discourse. In Australia significant contributors to raising the profile of this discourse include board chairs and CEOs (usually male), leading corporate regulators and the media. Drawing on our own empirical research in this paper we revisit the notion of critical mass theory and the ‘body counting’ tradition as the benchmark against which to judge the achievement of gender equity in the senior ranks of organizations. We explore a number of more nuanced ways in which organizations might seek to demonstrate the fulfilment of this agenda.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationBAM 2011 conference proceedings
Subtitle of host publicationbuilding and sustaining high performance organisations in a challenging environment
Place of PublicationLondon
PublisherBritish Academcy of Management (BAM)
Pages1-5
Number of pages5
ISBN (Print)9780954960834
Publication statusPublished - 2011
EventBritish Academy of Management Conference - Birmingham, UK
Duration: 13 Jan 201115 Jan 2011

Conference

ConferenceBritish Academy of Management Conference
CityBirmingham, UK
Period13/01/1115/01/11

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