The contribution of Women’s Networks to gender (in)equality in IT field. An analysis of the role of women’s network in male-dominated domain

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STEM field has been considered as a male domain for a long time. Studies showed that gender inequality in STEM is not an ability issue, but a consequence of different stereotypes and biases towards women and their abilities. Engineering and Technology fields of STEM are claimed to be the most male prevalent, with strong male networks that create a barrier for women when entering the field and make the workplace uncomfortable for them. It is especially relevant for IT industry, which becomes more and more attractive, but remains male-dominated. To resolve this issue, it was suggested that women can create their own networks for support and career development. This research aims to examine how participating in networks can influence women’s abilities to enter IT field and progress at the workplace. An inductive qualitative study has been conducted in the form of semi-structured interviews with the women's network participants of the IT company. As will be uncovered later in this study, the contribution of women's network to gender (in)equality is debated. Although the benefits including providing emotional support and career advancement were clearly stated, not all women acknowledged the need in women's networks.
Faculteit der Managementwetenschappen