Research Handbook of Diversity and Careers
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Research Handbook of Diversity and Careers

Edited by Adelina M. Broadbridge and Sandra L. Fielden

This unique Research Handbook covers a wide range of issues that affect the careers of those in diverse groups: age, disability, gender, race, religion, sexuality and transgender, as well as appearance. International experts from a variety of backgrounds contribute chapters in their given fields, reviewing current thinking, practices, initiatives and developments within the field, as well as presenting a wide-ranging and holistic coverage of the topic.
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Chapter 28: Lesbian career experiences

Sandra L. Fielden and Hannah Jepson


This chapter explores the experiences of lesbians in terms of career progression and development, focusing on several areas, including discrimination in the workplace, career resources, barriers to career development and the importance of disclosing one’s sexual identity in the workplace. The chapter highlights several key findings, such as the importance of the relationship between gender and sexuality; the importance of working within a policy-driven environment such as the public sector; the importance of personality and the modification of behaviour as a personal resource for lesbians in the workplace. The chapter also highlights the fact that discrimination still occurs at work but manifests itself in different and often more subtle ways, and it was reported that, despite protective legislation, one of the greatest challenges for lesbians is working within a heterosexist and heteronormative environment.

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