Gender Stratification in the IT Industry

Gender Stratification in the IT Industry

Sex, Status and Social Capital

Kenneth W. Koput and Barbara A. Gutek

This illuminating monograph introduces a status-equilibrating, social capital explanation for the persistent gender stratification in the field of information technology. The authors analyze why the workforce has become increasingly male-dominated over time by looking at how pre-employment conditions provide different experiences and opportunities for women and men.

Chapter 4: Results

Kenneth W. Koput and Barbara A. Gutek

Subjects: business and management, diversity and management, gender and management


We now turn to the inferential statistical tests of our main theoretical ideas. We begin with some remarks about our outcome variables that will help us to formalize tests of propositions P1–P9. We have five key behavioral outcomes: dropping out before graduating, graduating with non-MIS plans, job interviews, job offers and salary. We also have two attitudinal outcomes, commitment to the field at time of graduating, and satisfaction with the accepted job offer or non-job opportunity taken. In addition, there are two intermediate, or endogenous, outcomes: slipping cohorts and occupying a global leadership position. The propositions given at the end of Chapter 2 distinguish between outcomes based on the extent to which they derive from either different predictors or different aspects of our predictors. As to the latter, we wish to pay particular attention to three aspects of social capital: emotional support, access to information within the network, and the transmission of information to outside audiences. Beginning with the key retention behavior of dropping out before graduating, we note that its dichotomous nature masks underlying variation in the experience. Some students march through with ease, while others struggle to make the grade, so to speak, in time to officially commence with their incoming cohort. Yet, for all those who meet the minimum requirements by the deadline, the result is, both by nature and by operationalization, that they are considered fully retained to that moment. The important point is this. Emotional support can play a determining role in whether students...

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