Women leaders: The social world of health care

ArticleinJournal of Health Organisation and Management 25(2):159-75 · May 2011with10 Reads
Impact Factor: 0.36 · DOI: 10.1108/14777261111134400 · Source: PubMed


    The purpose of this paper is to illustrate a microcosm of the complexities that women face in a masculine environment.
    Ten women administrators were selected from one Southeastern University in the USA, using criterion sampling. The interviews of five women from male-dominated colleges (greater than 50 percent male faculty-MD) and five from female-dominated fields (FD) were analyzed. For further study, the texts of the four women from healthcare colleges were compared with the six from non-healthcare fields. Interviewees were asked questions about their background, leadership and power. Confidentiality was adhered to according to the university's IRB guidelines and policies.
    The social world of the healthcare Deans was evident and was shaped around a "rigid hierarchy of authority and power" that goes beyond gender and is stratified among health-related professions.
    This examination of the hierarchical discourse of power within the social world of healthcare gives valuable instruction for women's negotiation through adaptation.