Gender-Fair Language in Organizations: Attracting Potential Leaders and Promoting the Organizational Image of Gender Equality

Horvath, Lisa Kristina; Sczesny, Sabine (10 July 2014). Gender-Fair Language in Organizations: Attracting Potential Leaders and Promoting the Organizational Image of Gender Equality (Unpublished). In: 17th General Meeting of the European Association of Social Psychology. Amsterdam NL. 09.-12.07.2014.

Official URL: http://www.easp.eu

In many languages, masculine generics are the traditional way of referring to women and men. However, gender-fair forms (e.g., feminine-masculine word pairs) can enhance gender equality: for instance, they counteract male biases in mental associations (Stahlberg et al., 2007) and evoke more neutral perceptions of gender-stereotypical professions (Merkel et al., 2013). Compared to masculine forms, use of gender-fair language in advertisements for leadership positions also helps to achieve gender equality in hiring decisions (e.g., use of German Geschäftsführerin/Geschäftsführer 'CEO fem/masc' instead of Geschäftsführer 'CEO masc', cf. Horvath & Sczesny, 2012). The present research investigates how potential applicants react to the use of gender-fair vs. masculine forms in German job ads for leadership positions (Study 1) and how the respective organization is perceived in response to these forms (Study 2). In Study 1, 251 participants showed higher intentions to apply for a leadership position when it was advertised with a feminine-masculine word pair instead of a masculine form; this was mediated by job appeal and organizational attraction. In Study 2, 154 participants perceived the organization as more discriminatory when masculine forms were used. This was mediated by the organizational image of gender equality. Thus, gender-fair language affects the social perception of a job and the respective organization and can impact social behavior in an organizational context.

Item Type:

Conference or Workshop Item (Speech)

Division/Institute:

07 Faculty of Human Sciences > Institute of Psychology > Social Psychology and Social Neuroscience

UniBE Contributor:

Horvath, Lisa Kristina and Sczesny, Sabine

Subjects:

100 Philosophy > 150 Psychology
300 Social sciences, sociology & anthropology

Language:

English

Submitter:

Irène Gonce-Gyr

Date Deposited:

03 Mar 2015 08:59

Last Modified:

09 Mar 2015 13:25

Uncontrolled Keywords:

gender-fair language, organizational attraction, organizational image

URI:

https://boris.unibe.ch/id/eprint/63695

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