Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS:
Title: Accounting for the gender imbalance in UK Higher Education administration : a discourse analysis
Author: Caminotto, Gabriella
ISNI:       0000 0004 7224 5429
Awarding Body: City, University of London
Current Institution: City, University of London
Date of Award: 2018
Availability of Full Text:
Access from EThOS:
Access from Institution:
UK Higher Education is considered to be at the forefront of equality and diversity policy and practice, yet its staff profile is characterised by persistent gender (among other types of) imbalance. This thesis investigates this paradox, focusing on the under-researched professional and support services staff, and particularly female-dominated administrative and secretarial occupations. In contrast to the few previous studies on the topic, this PhD project takes a discursive perspective to explore this paradox. In other words, it examines how university professional and support staff discursively account for the persistent gender imbalance in their sector, with a particular focus on how they talk themselves out of acting to change the status quo, i.e. on discursive barriers to change. A UK case-study university, whose staff gender-imbalanced profile is representative of the national picture, was selected as the epistemological site. Focus groups were conducted with female and male staff in administrative and secretarial occupations; interviews were carried out with managers who had progressed internally from administrative and secretarial roles, and with former employees of the case-study university. Data were analysed and interpreted from a critical realist, feminist perspective. Discourse analysis was conducted, with a specific focus on the functions, effects and implications of participants’ situated use of gendered discourses and discursive constructions, and co-production of patterned accounts. This thesis takes a much-needed step beyond deconstruction and critique of discursive barriers, towards promoting discursive reconstruction and change. It highlights participants’ potentially emancipatory uses of counter-discourses, and provides recommendations for discursive change.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: HD28 Management. Industrial Management ; HQ The family. Marriage. Woman ; LB2300 Higher Education ; LF Individual institutions (Europe) ; P Language and Literature