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Title: Reducing Harassment for Women in the Professional Construction Workplace with Zero-Tolerance and Interventionist Policies
The construction industry is known for its masculine culture where workplace discrimination, biases, and harassment exist. While interventions such as greater workplace diversity, equity and inclusion programs, and mentoring initiatives are directed toward fostering career engagement and employee retention, women continue to leave professional positions in the construction industry. Using an ethnographic methodology, the aim of this study was to identify and examine the dynamics involved in the perseverance of professional women working in the construction industry. In-depth interviews were conducted, and a qualitative approach toward gathering data was utilized. Consistent questions were posed to the participants primarily through synchronous communications, and specific construction companies and professional women employees were asked to participate. Results suggest that women in leadership positions who previously experienced harassment had male interventionists, and are now serving as the primary interventionists for younger women in their companies. Further results suggest increased women’s participation is realized by forming multiple supportive organizational structures within the construction workplace culture and enacting zero-tolerance guidelines to curb inappropriate or harassing behavior. These research findings underscore the need for further exploration of novel interventional mechanisms toward greater retention of women in the industry.
Award ID(s):
Publication Date:
Journal Name:
Construction Research Congress 2022
Page Range or eLocation-ID:
376 to 385
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
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