Supporting 'superwomen'? Conflicting role prescriptions, gender-equality arrangements and career motivation among Dutch women physicians
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Number of pages
SourceHuman Relations, 67, 2, (2014), pp. 175-204
Article / Letter to editor
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SW OZ RSCR SOC
SubjectInequality Cohesion Rationalization; Ongelijkheid Cohesie Rationalisatie
Women physicians are confronted with incompatible gendered role prescriptions, whereby the role of the ‘ideal’ mother contrasts sharply with that of the ‘ideal’ physician. This study introduces four goal frames that reflect how women physicians internalize these conflicting role prescriptions and investigates the relationship between women’s goal frames and their career motivation. It also examines the relationship between gender-equality arrangements – inspired by the same underlying ideals – and women physicians’ career motivation, and whether these arrangements moderate the relationship between goal frames and career motivation. Cross-sectional data on 1070 Dutch women physicians collected in 2008 indicate that women physicians with switching goal frames (i.e. those who want to live up to both ideals) are no less career-motivated than women with one dominant goal frame. However, gender-equality arrangements mainly seem to support women physicians who prioritize one role over the other. No evidence was found that gender-equality arrangements support those who try to combine conflicting role expectations.
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