Gender in the construction industry: literature review and comparative survey of men’s and women’s perceptions in UK construction consultancies

Harris, Jennifer, Naoum, Shamil, Rizzuto, Joseph and Egbu, Charles (2019) Gender in the construction industry: literature review and comparative survey of men’s and women’s perceptions in UK construction consultancies. Management in Engineering, 36 (2). ISSN 0742-597X

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Abstract

For more than two decades, construction industry leaders have made attempts to attract more women into professional roles to ease skills shortages and diversify the workforce. However, the number of women working in the industry has not improved significantly. This paper reviews previous literature on gender diversity in the construction industry and disseminates findings from a survey which investigated whether there are significant differences in self-perception between men and women in construction consultancies operating in the United Kingdom (UK). The survey questionnaire was completed by 60 men and 57 women. Analysis of the result confirmed that women tend to follow ‘zig-zag’ career development paths and that ‘global self-worth’ of women over the age of 40 is the lowest among all ages. However, little variation was found on initiatives to improve retention of women in construction consultancies. The results reveal that both men and women regarded ‘improved flexible working-arrangements’, ‘transparent promotion criteria’, ‘return to work training’, ‘outreach programmes to schools’ as the most crucial initiatives to retain women. This reinforces the call for organizations to introduce innovative strategic plan to change the masculine culture of the construction profession and to modernise working practice away from the existing rather outdated traditional structure.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Gender; Professional Roles; Self-perception
Subjects: Construction and engineering > Built environment
Construction and engineering
Depositing User: Shamil Naoum
Date Deposited: 05 Aug 2019 11:32
Last Modified: 06 Dec 2019 10:34
URI: http://repository.uwl.ac.uk/id/eprint/6304

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