- Kevin Stainback⇑
- Purdue University, USA
- Sibyl Kleiner
- University of Calgary, CANADA
- Sheryl Skaggs
- University of Texas–Dallas, USA
- Kevin Stainback, Department of Sociology, Purdue University, 700 W. State Street, West Lafayette, IN 47907-2059; e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.
A growing literature examines the organizational factors that promote women’s access to positions of organizational power. Fewer studies, however, explore the implications of women in leadership positions for the opportunities and experiences of subordinates. Do women leaders serve to undo the gendered organization? In other words, is women’s greater representation in leadership positions associated with less gender segregation at lower organizational levels? We explore this question by drawing on Cohen and Huffman’s (2007) conceptual framework of women leaders as either “change agents” or “cogs in the machine” and analyze a unique multilevel data set of workplaces nested within Fortune 1000 firms. Our findings generally support the “agents of change” perspective. Women’s representation among corporate boards of directors, corporate executives, and workplace managers is associated with less workplace gender segregation. Hence, it appears that women’s access to organizational power helps to undo the gendered organization.
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