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Women in hospitality and tourism: a study of the top-down and bottom-up dynamics

Muhammad Ali (Queensland University of Technology, Brisbane, Australia)
Mirit K. Grabarski (Lakehead University, Thunder Bay, Canada)
Alison M. Konrad (University of Western Ontario, London, Canada)

International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management

ISSN: 0959-6119

Article publication date: 19 January 2022

Issue publication date: 11 March 2022

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Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to investigate the impact of women’s representation at one hierarchical level on women’s representation above or below that level. No past research investigated these effects in the hospitality and tourism industries. The mixed results of research in other industries and across industries demand tests of curvilinearity and moderators.

Design/methodology/approach

Using annual equality reports, a panel data set for 2010–2019 was created for the hospitality and tourism industries. The sample of 581 organizations had up to 5,810 observations over the 10 years.

Findings

The analyses show the following effects of women’s representation: an inverted U-shape from management to non-management, a U-shape from non-management to management and a U-shape from management to the executive team, with more pronounced effect in small organizations.

Practical implications

To increase the number of female employees, organizations should invest their resources in hiring and retaining female managers until a gender balance is reached while managing any backlash from men. The results suggest that organizations with more than 40% of women non-management employees and 50% of women managers start `experiencing positive bottom-up dynamics. Thus, efforts need to be made to attract and retain a women’s pipeline at the non-management and management levels.

Originality/value

This study delivers pioneering evidence of the top-down and bottom-up phenomena in hospitality and tourism. It refines evidence of such effects found in past research conducted in other industries and across industries.

Keywords

Citation

Ali, M., Grabarski, M.K. and Konrad, A.M. (2022), "Women in hospitality and tourism: a study of the top-down and bottom-up dynamics", International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management, Vol. 34 No. 4, pp. 1448-1469. https://doi.org/10.1108/IJCHM-05-2021-0551

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2022, Emerald Publishing Limited

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