At the same time, new government data reveal that workers with higher levels of education also have higher levels of job preparation in the form of job-related certificates or licenses.
The share was highest among the most educated. There is also a gender gap in the acquisition of certificates and licenses, but in favor of women. However, there is virtually no difference by age in the likelihood of having a job certificate or license among workers 25 and older. The relationship among education, gender and job training may be the result of which industries and occupations require certificates and licenses. Indeed, industries and occupations vary greatly on this account. Acquiring new skills and seeking higher levels of job preparation are not the only challenges facing workers today.
Two recessions this century, in and the Great Recession of , have set back the employment and earnings potential of many workers by years. Meanwhile, employers have also cut back on the provision of health and pension benefits. Traditional employment arrangements, while still the norm, are showing signs of waning. Alternative work arrangements in the form of contract work, on-call work and temporary help agencies appear to be on the rise. But in the midst of this, women have raised their engagement with the labor market and the gender wage gap has narrowed in recent decades. The employment rate in the U.
The decline in the employment rate since is linked in part to the aging of the workforce as older workers are less likely to remain in the labor force. Even though the overall employment rate is currently the same as in , there are some sharp differences across age groups.
Younger workers are much less likely to be working today than they were in , and older workers are laboring on more. Most of this turnaround has happened this century. This trend is driven partly by the fact that a larger share of young adults are enrolled in college, which delays their entry into the workforce.
At the other end of the age spectrum, older adults are staying in the workforce longer than they used to and their employment rate is climbing as a result.
The increase was uninterrupted by the Great Recession. Since , the employment rate has fallen for both men and women, although men have experienced a slightly steeper decline. Earnings of full-time, year-round workers are fairly flat since 15 American workers overall have not received much of a pay raise from to But there is a sharp difference in the outcomes for men and women during this time — the earnings of men have fallen, and the earnings of women have risen.
Workers with a four-year college degree and older workers have also fared better than others. As a result, the wage gap between women and men has narrowed from about 60 cents on the dollar in to 80 cents on the dollar in Along education lines, workers with a four-year college or higher level of education are the only group to experience a gain in median earnings since Meanwhile, the median earnings of workers with lesser education decreased, with the greatest loss experienced by workers who did not complete high school.
Younger workers are earning significantly less than they did in , but the earnings of older workers have risen. A smaller share of workers are covered by employer-provided benefits 17 As earnings overall barely inched up, employee benefits — judged by the share of workers covered by employer-sponsored health insurance or retirement plans — have eroded since Only older workers, 55 and older, and, to some extent, workers with a four-year college degree or higher level of education have bucked this trend.
But even as the coverage of workers has slipped, benefit costs have assumed a larger share of employee compensation due, in part, to the rising cost of health insurance plans. As of , employer-sponsored health insurance plans cover a smaller share of workers than they did in Most workers get health insurance coverage either through their own employer or the employer of a family member, such as a spouse or parent. The youngest workers ages 16 to 24 experienced the sharpest decline in employer-sponsored health insurance coverage.
However, older workers, especially those ages 65 and older, are much more likely to get insurance through an employer than they were several decades ago. Coverage fell among all other education groups. In contrast to the long-run decline in health insurance benefits, the decrease in retirement benefits is of more recent origin. Changes in retirement plan access also vary across demographic groups, with older workers and women faring better than other groups.
Overall, retirement benefits are most commonly available to workers in their prime working years. Thus, women now are more likely than men to have access to a retirement plan. Bureau of Labor Statistics.
The increase in benefit costs derives principally from an increase in insurance benefits including health insurance. Job tenure, measured by how long workers have been with their current employer, has increased in the past three decades. Most of this increase occurred since In part, this is due to the rising share of older workers in the labor force. These workers tend to have a much longer tenure with their employer. But the economic downturns this century, such as the Great Recession, may also have been a factor, making it harder for workers to switch jobs.
The median job tenure for all workers was 4. The increase was greater among women from 3. Thus, working women now stay with their employer almost as long as their male counterparts do. Older workers tend to have been with their current employer longer than younger workers.
In , workers 55 and older had a median tenure greater than 10 years, compared with about 3 years for 25 to year-old workers. The job tenure of specific age groups has not changed much since , with the exception of older workers.
Workers with higher education do not have more job tenure than their lesser-educated counterparts. Workers with less than a high school education have the shortest tenure among all education groups 4. Americans are working more overall 20 Americans may not be employed in greater shares and their earnings may have risen only modestly, but they are putting in more time at work today than they did in Most notably, workers are putting in an average of nearly four more weeks of work annually, with the average climbing from 43 weeks in to The average length of a typical workweek is also up, increasing to This change is largely driven by the increasing hours and weeks that women devote to the labor market.
With respect to hours at work, the average amount of time per week by employed women increased from Employed women also significantly increased the weeks they worked on a yearly basis. The average number of weeks worked by working women was Weeks worked increased by less among employed men, rising from As a result, employed women now work nearly as many weeks annually on average as men.
To be successful, family friendly HR policies should be tied to other organizational structures, processes, and practices such as organizational strategy, leadership, culture, and climate. A positive climate for diversity exists when organizational members perceive that diverse groups are included, empowered, and treated fairly. However, levels of benevolent sexism are reduced when individuals are explicitly informed about the harmful implications of benevolent sexism Becker and Swim, A second look at the relationship between rating and behavioral accuracy in performance appraisal. A Research and Policy Series Vol. In future work, one could analyze the broader context that organizations operate in, which influences its structures, processes, and practices, as well as its members. In addition, there is evidence of discrimination against pregnant women when they apply for jobs Hebl et al.
Another factor contributing to the growing trend is the sharp increase of work hours among workers 65 and older. The average for workers in this age group increased from The fieldwork for the study was conducted in —7 and was funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council. Both of us have continued to research the cultural and media industries and, in our view, while these industries have continued to change, as they always do, they have not changed so much that our fieldwork does not cast interesting light on present realities.
The fieldwork was done entirely within England. We make no claims about the international generalizability of the data. However, based on our familiarity with cultural industries in other Anglophone countries, we believe it likely that some of these patterns would be reproduced elsewhere in the over developed world.
In the cultural industries, as in many other sectors, the tasks most often carried out by women rather than men include public relations and marketing. Things have changed somewhat — there are other roles that women have begun to take on. But across all three of the industries that we studied television, magazine journalism and music many of the marketing and PR staff we talked to were women, working in departments where women were in a majority. As Negus explains in relation to the UK recording industry, it was not always this way: PR and marketing were among those occupations that were feminized in the s, both inside the cultural industries and more generally.
PR and marketing can be seen as cultural occupations that exist in many — indeed most — industries and in many firms, including in the cultural industries themselves. A second area of cultural work that is markedly female in the composition of its workforce is, broadly, those types of work concerned with the co-ordination and facilitation of production. And this relates closely to a third area of occupational segregation: On visiting an independent television production company, one of us noticed that the first half of the office area, nearest to the reception, was all male.
This was by no means atypical in television production, and importantly, the creative side is more prestigious. A female documentary producer and production manager told us: Totally, totally crap that is, isn't it? Such hierarchization is also apparent in the case of public relations and marketing, which, like production co-ordination, are less prestigious occupations within the cultural industries than are creative roles.
Nevertheless, some interviewees noted shifts in segregation by sex. These are rather more managerial than they are creative — the core of the job is to organize and handle the creative outputs of others. The job is not dissimilar to that of the commissioning editor in publishing, a role that was feminized relatively early, in the s and s see Henry, But only 18 per cent of creatives were women, and this percentage actually declined in the s.
Combined with problems for women in gaining promotion, endemic in most industries and which we will discuss below this in turn meant that very few women achieved the position of creative director. Yet, because marketing had become increasingly feminized, as discussed above, the marketing managers to whom advertisers were presenting were often female: According to figures cited by Nixon There is a fourth form of work segregation by sex in the cultural industries, which will perhaps come as no surprise, because of the long and problematic relationship between gender and technology see Wajcman, What is more, as Miranda Banks points out, craft and technical occupations associated with women, such as costume design, tend to be relatively unrecognized and undervalued.
This can happen to the degree that such occupations are not even recognized as involving craft or technical skills at all. While creative roles might sometimes be more prestigious, and more recognized publicly, actual creative workers receive very unequal rewards and have very different levels of power and autonomy from each other.
These issues are important in the present context because technical and craft jobs tend to be taken by men — and there may be divisions within the creative jobs, whereby occupations with high numbers of women, such as acting, are prone to uncertain work conditions. We are likely to understand the complexities of segregation by sex better, the more we drill down to specific job levels, rather than looking at occupations or occupational groupings such as creative or craft workers as a whole. So, we have presented a number of ways in which work segregation by sex is manifested in the cultural industries.
How, though, do we explain such patterns? To ask such a question invokes the broader problem of explaining work segregation by sex in general. Anker has discussed how some dominant social science theories, notably neo-classical, human capital and institutional labour market models, tend a to treat occupational sex segregation as though it is the same thing as sex-based pay differentials, when it is not; b fail to provide an explanation of how occupational sex segregation comes about.
Some of them are positive, such as the idea that women have a caring nature, that they are skilled in domestic work, or that they have greater manual dexterity, trustworthiness and attractiveness. Such views feed the gendering of occupations such as nursing, teaching, social work, hairdressing, dressmaking, book-keeping, reception and shop assistant work, and so on. Some are negative, such as ideas that women are less able to supervise others, that they have less physical strength many women have greater physical strength than many men , that they are less able in science and maths, that they are less willing to travel, or to face danger and use physical force.
This affects the gendering of occupations such as management, mining and construction work, engineering and transport, and security work. These tend to push women in the direction of jobs that are low paid, unprotected and often repetitive. Questions of culture, meaning and discourse have been an important element of feminist theory in recent decades see Fraser, , for an incisive discussion of this issue.
The concept of stereotyping may seem to some rather basic compared with sophisticated debates about issues such as the gendering of language itself. Certainly, it has fallen from favour in media and cultural studies over the last 30 years though see Pickering, , for a defence and clarification of the concept and in feminist media studies. We would argue, along with feminists such as Robeyns , that stereotyping is an important concept for considering the way in which prevailing and repeated categorizations might influence the treatment of individuals and groups, provided it is applied with sufficient critical rigour, and provided it is combined with other factors in any explanation.
Wharton discusses two other factors identified by researchers as causes of sex segregation: All these factors are important and need to be combined with the effects of stereotypes in understanding sex segregation in the cultural industries. But here, for reasons of space, and because of the nature of our own data, we focus on gender stereotypes, or prevailing discourses about the characteristics of women and men, as potential explanations of sex segregation.
Let us start from the case of PR and marketing. Observing the relatively high numbers of women in recording industry PR, Negus The idea that women are more capable of caring, supportive and nurturing work than men already mentioned above in relation to Anker's list, and widely recognized as a factor in understanding women's work may lie behind the presence of women in PR.
But related ideas were also invoked by some of our interviewees as a factor behind other forms of work gendering. Here, for example, is how one woman we interviewed sought to explain why documentary researchers were often women:. I think a lot of women tend to put people more at ease. They're not so threatening in some situations. They can make themselves quite vulnerable, just physically vulnerable.
I think each film dictates its own approach. It's a journey and every film makes itself in a way. So maybe a good woman filmmaker would use whatever she needed to use. I think any good filmmaker really, but some of the men I know seem to have more of an agenda on their films and more of a kind of bigger view.
I think the reason it has become very female is because women are also obviously better listeners. They have been brought up with a stronger emphasis on communication, listening. So maybe it's a gender stereotype forced upon people, but the fact is by the age of 20, 25, they are much more socially competent than men are.
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So if you are in an area which is predominantly people based and finding out about people and getting people to talk about themselves in a relaxed kind of way, then women tend to be better at that. Whether women really are better communicators or listeners is a moot point. The key issue is that people working in television and other cultural industries have come to see gender in this way, and this has opened up a space for women, and perhaps closed one down for men. This is the idea that women are better organized, and that they take greater care over procedure and so on.
One of our interviewees used this idea to discuss why, as mentioned earlier in this piece, the role of programme commissioning in television was increasingly taken by women:. So you have gender models. The two different genders overlap a lot but they also have different ways of succeeding.
Women offer by and large a variation of skills. Men are more mercurial, often more difficult to handle. Women are often very steady, solid and organised. You can still have very creative women and very uncreative women, and very creative men and very uncreative men, but they are different. I mean these are gross generalisations. His reasoning was as follows:. I suspect women are better organisers and want to feel that something is under control and well managed.
Your good director, the one that's different, is actually the one who is going to want to put a wheel off the wagon and see what happens and take a risk. It would only be fair to point out that Kieran was trying to explain the common sense of the industry, and how it contributes to work segregation by sex though this was not the term he used. The line between observing common stereotypes and tendencies and seeming to affirm them is often very thin. New articles by this author. New citations to this author. New articles related to this author's research.
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