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Do Women Top Managers Help Women Advance? A Panel Study Using EEO-1 Records

Author

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  • Kurtulus, Fidan Ana

    (University of Massachusetts Amherst)

  • Tomaskovic-Devey, Donald

    (North Carolina State University)

Abstract

The goal of this study is to examine whether women in the highest levels of firms' management ranks help reduce barriers to women's advancement in the workplace. Using a panel of over 20,000 private-sector firms across all industries and states during 1990-2003 from the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, we explore the influence of women in top management on subsequent female representation in lower-level managerial positions in U.S. firms. Our key findings show that an increase in the share of female top managers is associated with subsequent increases in the share of women in mid-level management positions within firms, and this result is robust to controlling for firm size, workforce composition, federal contractor status, firm fixed effects, year fixed effects and industry-specific trends. Moreover, although the influence of women in top management positions is strongest among white women, black, Hispanic and Asian women in top management also have a positive influence on subsequent increases in black, Hispanic and Asian women in mid-level management, respectively. Furthermore, the influence of women in top management positions is stronger among federal contractors, and in firms with larger female labor forces. We also find that the positive influence of women in top leadership positions on managerial gender diversity diminishes over time, suggesting that women at the top play a positive but transitory role in women's career advancement.

Suggested Citation

  • Kurtulus, Fidan Ana & Tomaskovic-Devey, Donald, 2012. "Do Women Top Managers Help Women Advance? A Panel Study Using EEO-1 Records," IZA Discussion Papers 6444, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp6444
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

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    2. Astrid Kunze & Amalia R. Miller, 2017. "Women Helping Women? Evidence from Private Sector Data on Workplace Hierarchies," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 99(5), pages 769-775, December.
    3. Kay, Rosemarie & Schlömer-Laufen, Nadine, 2016. "Gender diversity in top-management positions in large family and nonfamily businesses," Working Papers 02/16, Institut für Mittelstandsforschung (IfM) Bonn.
    4. Ulf Nielsson & Herdis Steingrimsdottir, 2018. "The signalling value of education across genders," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 54(4), pages 1827-1854, June.
    5. Périlleux, Anaïs & Szafarz, Ariane, 2015. "Women Leaders and Social Performance: Evidence from Financial Cooperatives in Senegal," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 74(C), pages 437-452.
    6. Haque, Adnan ul & Faizan, Riffat & Cockrill, Antje, 2017. "The Relationship between Female Representation at Strategic Level and Firm's Competitiveness: Evidences from Cargo Logistic Firms of Pakistan and Canada," MPRA Paper 80031, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised 24 Apr 2017.
    7. Jane Hurst & Sarah Leberman & Margot Edwards, 2018. "The career impacts of women managing women," Australian Journal of Management, Australian School of Business, vol. 43(1), pages 132-151, February.
    8. Lena E. Hensvik, 2014. "Manager Impartiality: Worker-Firm Matching and the Gender Wage Gap," ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 67(2), pages 395-421, April.
    9. Muhammad Ali & Yin Ng & Carol Kulik, 2014. "Board Age and Gender Diversity: A Test of Competing Linear and Curvilinear Predictions," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 125(3), pages 497-512, December.
    10. Kay, Rosemarie & Nielen, Sebastian, 2018. "Die Beschäftigungs- und Einkommenssituation von Young Women MINT Professionals im Mittelstand," Daten und Fakten 22, Institut für Mittelstandsforschung (IfM) Bonn.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    women managers; gender diversity; race diversity; discrimination; mentoring; promotions; hiring; retention;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • J16 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Gender; Non-labor Discrimination
    • J21 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Labor Force and Employment, Size, and Structure
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity
    • J44 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Particular Labor Markets - - - Professional Labor Markets and Occupations
    • J62 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Job, Occupational and Intergenerational Mobility; Promotion
    • J71 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor Discrimination - - - Hiring and Firing
    • J78 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor Discrimination - - - Public Policy (including comparable worth)
    • J82 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor Standards - - - Labor Force Composition
    • M51 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Personnel Economics - - - Firm Employment Decisions; Promotions

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