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The discourse of meritocracy contested/reproduced: Foreign women academics in UK business schools

Śliwa, M and Johansson, M (2014) 'The discourse of meritocracy contested/reproduced: Foreign women academics in UK business schools.' Organization, 21 (6). 821 - 843. ISSN 1350-5084

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Abstract

© The Author(s) 2013. This article provides insights into the role of minority employees in reproducing and contesting the discourse of meritocracy in contemporary organizations. It also discusses the effects the contestation of meritocracy, or the lack thereof, has on organizational power relations and on the situation of individuals who are the target of meritocratic policies. Empirically, we address the experiences of a growing category of workers—women academics of non-UK origin—employed within UK business schools. Based on the analysis of narratives focusing on the career trajectories of our research participants, we show how the belief in, and paradoxically the questioning of, meritocratic principles contribute to the reproduction of inequalities. We conclude that, as a result of the overarching perpetuation, and only limited challenging of, extant power relations in organizations, both the current definitions of merit and the application of meritocratic principles remain unchanged.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
H Social Sciences > HQ The family. Marriage. Women
L Education > LB Theory and practice of education > LB2300 Higher Education
Divisions: Faculty of Social Sciences > Essex Business School
Depositing User: Jim Jamieson
Date Deposited: 20 Sep 2013 10:37
Last Modified: 30 Jan 2019 16:23
URI: http://repository.essex.ac.uk/id/eprint/7823

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