Gender in the Construction Industry: Literature Review and Comparative Survey of Men’s and Women’s Perceptions in UK Construction Consultancies

Article


Naoum, S. G., Harris, J., Rizzuto, J. and Egbu, C. 2019. Gender in the Construction Industry: Literature Review and Comparative Survey of Men’s and Women’s Perceptions in UK Construction Consultancies. Journal of Management in Engineering. 36 (2).
AuthorsNaoum, S. G., Harris, J., Rizzuto, J. and Egbu, C.
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 that 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 results 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, and outreach programs to schools the most crucial initiatives to retain women. This reinforces the call for organizations to introduce innovative strategic plans to change the masculine culture of the construction profession and modernize working practice away from the existing rather outdated traditional structure.

JournalJournal of Management in Engineering
Journal citation36 (2)
ISSN0742-597X
Year2019
PublisherAmerican Society of Civil Engineers
Accepted author manuscript
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)doi:10.1061/(ASCE)ME.1943-5479.0000731
Web address (URL)https://doi.org/10.1061/(ASCE)ME.1943-5479.0000731
Publication dates
Print26 Nov 2019
Publication process dates
Accepted01 Aug 2019
Deposited24 Jan 2020
Copyright holder© 2019 American Society of Civil Engineers
Copyright informationThis material may be downloaded for personal use only. Any other use requires prior permission of the American Society of Civil Engineers. This material may be found at: https://doi.org/10.1061/(ASCE)ME.1943-5479.0000731.
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