CCL researcher Diane Bergeron held a session with the World Trade Organization centered around gender equity. The session, entitled ‘Carefully Constructed Femininity: Untangling Double Binds’, seeded a discussion of gendered social roles, unlocking the power of gender diversity, and action steps to acknowledge women’s contributing role in the workplace.

Research on gender diversity emphasizes the power of embracing diversity for greater innovation, creativity, and success. For example, evidence suggests that innovation jumps when the proportion of female managers rises above 20%. However, social and workplace roles are often gendered, with individuals’ accomplishments and actions viewed differently based on their gender identity. Among the topics discussed in this session were the nature of gendered social roles, how bias is baked in to organizational processes (e.g., promotion), women’s traditionally heavier caretaking burden (at work and at home), and the myth of meritocracy. Importantly, the session included a discussion of actions steps for both individuals and managers to take in recognizing and challenging gendered norms in the workplace.

More broadly, Diane’s research explores different elements of gender identity in leadership. Her recent work explores the role of gender in group meeting dynamics, employee voice and managerial listening, organizational wives, and bias in measures of organizational citizenship behavior.