Gender sensitisation has been increasing in parts across the world. Looking at the gender disparity trends in the countries of US and Sweden, two students of Northeastern University Mary King and Malin Ortenblad make some important discoveries.
Looking at the proportion of women working in investment banking sector, they found out that the reports were not very promising. Conducting online surveys of about 60 professionals in the finance sector from both the countries. These were followed by elaborate interviews. King and Ortenblad found out from their research that most respondents felt the environment was masculine and unwelcome to women. Interviewees were also cited as saying that women were, perhaps, not interested in the field at all.
However, the results are not all negative. King’s and Ortenblad’s research have also found that the new generation of employees who have newly graduated are more confident in voicing out the gender inequalities. Their study has also found that people not working in the finance sector can also have an impact on these. What this shows is that while investment banking workplace may not have been welcome to women in the past, but the trends are changing now with more sensitivity on such issues by the upcoming generations of graduates.
It may be too early to say that the glass ceiling has completely shattered but it is safe to say that it is not as solid as it once was. The only way to break it completely is to acknowledge, and not hide away by using prejudices as explanations, for the gender discrimination in our surroundings and contemplate on measures to address them immediately.
N Malavika Mohan