Navigation Links
Weight discrimination could contribute to the glass ceiling effect for women, study finds
Date:4/7/2009

EAST LANSING, Mich. Weight discrimination appears to add to the glass ceiling effect for women, finds a new study co-authored by a Michigan State University scholar.

Overweight and obese women are significantly underrepresented among the top CEOs in the United States, according to the research, which appears in the British journal Equal Opportunities International. However, while obese men were also underrepresented, overweight men were actually overrepresented among top CEOs.

The different results for women and men suggest weight bias may contribute to the glass ceiling on the advancement of women to the top levels of management, said Mark Roehling, MSU associate professor of human resource management.

"The results suggest that while being obese limits the career opportunities of both women and men, being 'merely overweight' harms only female executives and may actually benefit male executives," he said. "This pattern of findings is consistent with previous research indicating that, at least among white Americans, there is a tendency to hold women to harsher weight standards."

Roehling said the research is the first to focus on the potential effect of weight on career advancement to the highest levels of management. For the study, two groups of experts analyzed publicly available photos of CEOs from Fortune 1000 companies. The expert raters included individuals who were tested prior to the study to determine their accuracy in assessing body weight based on photographs, and medical professionals who by virtue of training and experience are experts at weight estimation.

Both groups found that only 5 percent of male and female CEOs at top companies were obese (body mass index greater than 30), which is much lower than the U.S. average of 36 percent for men and 38 percent for women of similar age.

Study findings also indicate that between 45 percent and 61 percent of top male CEOs are overweight (BMI between 25 and 29), which is higher than the U.S. average of 41 percent in similarly aged men. That means overweight men were actually overrepresented in top CEO positions.

In sharp contrast, only 5 percent-22 percent of top female CEOs were overweight, compared with the U.S. average of 29 percent among similarly aged women.

"This reflects a greater tolerance and possibly even a preference for a larger size among men but a smaller size among women," the researchers write in the study.

Said Roehling: "It appears that the glass ceiling effect on women's advancement may reflect not only general negative stereotypes about the competencies of women, but also weight bias that results in the application of stricter appearance standards to women."

Leading the research team with Mark Roehling was Patricia Roehling, professor of psychology at Hope College in Holland, Mich.

ce management.

"The results suggest that while being obese limits the career opportunities of both women and men, being 'merely overweight' harms only female executives and may actually benefit male executives," he said. "This pattern of findings is consistent with previous research indicating that, at least among white Americans, there is a tendency to hold women to harsher weight standards."

Roehling said the research is the first to focus on the potential effect of weight on career advancement to the highest levels of management. For the study, two groups of experts analyzed publicly available photos of CEOs from Fortune 1000 companies. The expert raters included individuals who were tested prior to the study to determine their accuracy in assessing body weight based on photographs, and medical professionals who by virtue of training and experience are experts at weight estimation.

Both groups found that only 5 percent of male and female CEOs at top companies were obese (body mass index greater than 30), which is much lower than the U.S. average of 36 percent for men and 38 percent for women of similar age.

Study findings also indicate that between 45 percent and 61 percent of top male CEOs are overweight (BMI between 25 and 29), which is higher than the U.S. average of 41 percent in similarly aged men. That means overweight men were actually overrepresented in top CEO positions.

In sharp contrast, only 5 percent-22 percent of top female CEOs were overweight, compared with the U.S. average of 29 percent among similarly aged women.

"This reflects a greater tolerance and possibly even a preference for a larger size among men but a smaller size among women," the researchers write in the study.

Said Roehling: "It appears that the glass ceiling effect on women's advancement may reflect not only general negative stereotypes about the competencies of women, but also weight bias that results in the application of stricter appearance standards to women."

Leading the research team with Mark Roehling was Patricia Roehling, professor of psychology at Hope College in Holland, Mich.


'/>"/>

Contact: Mark Roehling
roehling@msu.edu
517-355-3335
Michigan State University
Source:Eurekalert  

Related medicine news :

1. Early Weight Loss in Women Linked to Dementia
2. New research explores newborn in-hospital weight loss
3. Weight-Loss Surgeries Extend Lives
4. School-based overweight prevention program may cut risk of eating disorders among girls
5. Overweight toddlers and those not in day care at risk for iron deficiency
6. Weight Watchers Declares Quarterly Dividend
7. Eat Seafood, See Weight Loss: Recent Study Finds Another Reason to Eat Seafood for a Fit Lifestyle
8. Weight Gain May Spell Trouble for Heart Failure Patients
9. New Research From America On the Move Foundation Indicates American Weight Loss Efforts Stalling
10. Weight loss game looking for NEAT-o results
11. Aerobic, Weight Training Combo Best Against Diabetes
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Weight discrimination could contribute to the glass ceiling effect for women, study finds
(Date:5/28/2016)... ... , ... SuperCloset is proud to officially launch our “Helping Veterans Grow ... and obstacles veterans’ need to overcome in order to face their life changes upon ... veteran(s) with a donated SuperCloset product based on the needs and ability of helping ...
(Date:5/27/2016)... ... ... More than a third of American adults are considered obese, says the ... increased attention in recent years, as an article published May 18th on ... people are familiar with the basic requirements of maintaining a healthy diet and exercise ...
(Date:5/27/2016)... ... May 27, 2016 , ... With over 60 percent of acute ... for a sustainable product to aid in the rehabilitation process has steadily increased. Ekso ... of individuals with hemiplegia due to stroke. , Ekso Bionics has now received clearance ...
(Date:5/27/2016)... New York, NY (PRWEB) , ... May 27, ... ... health care world, this installment is bolstered by inspiring human interest stories, courtesy ... to the developing trends and tech within the industry, from leading advocates and ...
(Date:5/26/2016)... ... ... There are many ways to cook a hot dog, but new research commissioned ... dogs straight off the grill. Of the 90 percent of Americans who say they ... hot dog, far outpacing other cooking methods such as steaming (12 percent), microwaving (9 ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:5/27/2016)... Amarantus BioScience Holdings, Inc. (OTCQX: AMBS), ... and Orphan Diseases, today announced that President & CEO Gerald ... SeeThru Equity MicroCap Conference   Where: ... , NY When: Tuesday, May 31 st , ... Where: Grand Hyatt Hotel, 109 East 42 nd St, ...
(Date:5/26/2016)... May 26, 2016   Change Healthcare ... analytics, network solutions and technology-enabled services designed ... entered into a strategic channel partnership with ... software solutions and revenue cycle management services ... and rehabilitation clinics to optimize revenue, operational ...
(Date:5/25/2016)... , Germany and GERMANTOWN, ... QIAGEN N.V. (NASDAQ: QGEN ; Frankfurt Prime Standard: ... licensing and co-development agreement with Therawis Diagnostics GmbH to develop ... be to develop and market PITX2 as a marker to ... high-risk breast cancer patients. "We are pleased to ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: