14th September 2000

 

GLASS CEILING STILL EXISTS IN 21ST CENTURY

 

The main reasons many women are held back from furthering their careers are a shortage of reliable childcare and the 'long-hours' culture, according to a book co-written by a Hull lecturer.

 

Jenny Headlam-Wells' successful 'Women into Management' course at the University of Lincolnshire & Humberside for women hoping to get back on track with their careers after having a family is now in its third year.

 

In collaboration with academics from the Universities of Valencia and Westminster the research seeks to explain the problems of women in Spain and the UK returning to management after a break in Spain and Great Britain. It also outlines what it would take to change the situation and argues the case for more women senior managers.

 

Jenny and her colleagues interviewed many female and male managers to ascertain attitudes and establish how women with families cope with their dual role and the so-called 'glass ceiling' which prevents their career advancement.

 

The authors conclude that reconciling the demands of family and work and the shortage of reliable childcare are key factors that hold women back.

 

"The way our society is currently organised, including the 'long-hours' culture, and stereotypical attitudes towards the capabilities of men and women managers also have a significant impact," says Jenny.

 

The three-year project and the new book, 'Exceptional Women: The Career Paths of Women Managers in Spain and the UK', have been funded by the Employment NOW initiative of the European Social Fund.

 

The book is supported by a foreword from Margaret Hodge, Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State at the Department for Education and Employment.

 

Ends

 

Press Officer Sam Hendley. Tel: 01522 886244