Gender safe work environment - A study of a gender safety climate which prevents sexual harassment and gender discrimination at work

Research project
Active research
Project size
4 920 000
Project period
2021 - 2024
Project owner
Department of Sociology and Work Science

Forte: The Swedish Research Council for Health, Working Life and Welfare

Short description

The #me too movement convinced the world that gender discrimination and sexual harassment is a considerableorganizational problem. It is obvious that in today’s working life, many employees do not feel safe. We argue that organizations need to develop a gender safe work environment, where sexual harassment and genderdiscrimination has been abolished and where men and women get equal opportunities.

The overall aim with this study is to explore

1. organization’s possibilities to understand and monitor the work environment and the organizational climateas ways of preventing sexual harassment and gender discrimination at work.
2. how a gender perspective, based on Connell (2006) and Acker’s (1990; 2009) work on gender regimes,inequality regimes and gendered organizations, adds to the body of knowledge on organizational climatesrelated to sexual harassment and gender discrimination.

We will examine different facets of organizational climate (Schneider et al, 2017) e.g. organizations' safetyclimate (Dollard & Bakker, 2010) and organizations' gender safety climate. To measure organizations' gendersafety climate, we will use and further develop a measure which we, based on Connell's (2006) work, previously have developed (Biswas et al, 2017; Allard, Biswas & Pousette, 2020). Through method triangulation, this study will contribute with knowledge about

  • what facets of organizational climate are needed in a gender safe work environment.
  • how a gender safe work environment is related to sexual harassment, gender discrimination andviolations.
  • how a gender safe work environment is related to organizational effectiveness.

Based on the results we will develop a tool for practitioners to analyze sexual harassment and genderdiscrimination as organizational problems and give employers 1) a possibility to identify risks in the psychosocialwork environment and 2) knowledge about how to prevent sexual harassment and gender discrimination onprimary, secondary and tertiary levels