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Country culture moderators of the relationship between gender and organizational commitment

Mark F. Peterson (Faculty of Business and Economics, Aarhus University, Copenhagen, Denmark)
Aycan Kara (Indiana University Southeast, New Albany, Indiana, USA)
Abiola Fanimokun (Maximus Inc., Falls Church, Virginia, USA)
Peter B. Smith (University of Sussex, Falmer, UK)

Baltic Journal of Management

ISSN: 1746-5265

Article publication date: 22 March 2019

Issue publication date: 18 June 2019




The present study consists of managers and professionals in 26 countries including seven from Central and Eastern Europe. The purpose of this paper is to investigate whether culture dimensions predict country differences in the relationship between gender and organizational commitment. The study integrated theories of social learning, role adjustment and exchange that link commitment to organizational roles to explain such differences in gender effects. Findings indicate that an alternative modernities perspective on theories of gender and commitment is better warranted than is a traditional modernities perspective.


This study examined the relationship between gender and organizational commitment using primary data collected in 26 counties. The cross-level moderating effects of individualism, masculinity, uncertainty avoidance, power distance and restraint vs indulgence was examined using hierarchical linear modeling.


Organizational commitment is found to be higher among men than women in four countries (Australia, China, Hungary, Jamaica) and higher among women than men in two countries (Bulgaria and Romania). Results shows that large power distance, uncertainty avoidance, femininity (social goal emphasis) and restraint (vs indulgence) predict an association between being female and commitment. These all suggest limitations to the traditional modernity-based understanding of gender and the workplace.


This study is unique based on the three theories it integrates and because it tests the proposed hypothesis using a multi-level nested research design. Moreover, the results suggest a tension between an alternative modernities perspective on top-down governmental effects on commitment through exchange and bottom-up personal effects on commitment through social learning with role adjustment in an intermediate position.



The Event Meaning Management Research Group: Abd Halim Ahmad, Debo Akande, Norm Althouse, Jon Aarum Andersen, Nicholas Athanassiou, Sabino Ayestaran, Massimo Bellotto, Stephen Bochner, Victor Callan, Valeria Cavalcante, Nam Guk Cho, Isabela Curado, Gudrun Curri, Reka Czegledi, Maria Alice D'Amorim, Carlos Davila, Bjorn Ekelund, Pierre-Henri François, Eduardo Gamas, Margarita Garcia, Gert Graversen, Beata Groblewska, Michael Hadani, Daniela Halasova, Charles Harb, K. Hoffman, Jorge Jesuino, Aristotle Kantas, Lyudmila Karamushka, Rob Konopaske, Paul Koopman, Pavla Kruzela, Ersin Kusdil, Tomas Lenartowicz, Kwok Leung, Tock Keng Lim, Sigmar Malvezzi, Mark Meckler, Andrew Mogaji, Shahrenaz Mortazavi, John Munene, Yaotian Pan, Ken Parry, T.K. Peng, Dana Pop, Betty Jane Punnett, Mark Radford, Arja Ropo, Julie Rowney, Sunita Sadhwani, Jose Saiz, Grant Savage, T.N. Sinha, Ritch Sorenson, Elizabeth Steinbeis, Erna Szabo, Yumiko Taylor, Punyacha Teparakul, Aqeel Tirmizi, Sevda Tsvetanova, Martin Udwin, Conrad Viedge, Carolyn Wall, Zhongming Wang, Vladimir Yanchuk and Irina Zinovieva.


Peterson, M.F., Kara, A., Fanimokun, A. and Smith, P.B. (2019), "Country culture moderators of the relationship between gender and organizational commitment", Baltic Journal of Management, Vol. 14 No. 3, pp. 389-410.



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