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University of Gothenburg

The importance of ethical values ​​for men's and women's leadership.

Many employers work with value systems, policies and behaviors - often referred to as employer branding - to offer attractive workplaces that people look for and that employees stop by. Theoretically, a conscious investment in employer branding increases employers' competitiveness and attractiveness by allowing an ethical value base to permeate the organization. In the current project, we want to investigate this empirically through comparative studies of managers in different organizational and cultural contexts.

We intend to investigate the extent to which organizations a) actively promote gender equality, b) support men and women to combine work and family / private life, c) take social responsibility and d) treat employees fairly. We want to investigate whether organizations 'ethical positions affect managers' commitment, desire to stay or leave the organization, job satisfaction, and performance. We apply a critical perspective by examining whether organizations have policies on these values ​​and compare how managers perceive that they are complied with in practice. The project has a gender perspective and draws on previous research results that have shown that gender composition is important for both organizational culture and conditions for leadership. In practical terms, this means that we intend to investigate and compare gender-mixed and male- and female-dominated organizations. We also plan to make comparisons between different industries and countries (Sweden and India). The results will contribute to new knowledge about value patterns and their significance for men's and women's leadership in various male and female-dominated as well as gender-mixed organizations in different industries and cultures. The results also provide knowledge that can benefit both employees and employers in the newly established research area employer branding.

The results of the project are presented in the book ”Understanding Attractive Work in a Globalized World”. Read more about the book (in Swedish)

Project period: 2012-01-01 - 2014-12-31

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

More information:




Karin Allard, project leader

Annika Härenstam

Lotta Dellve

Birgitta Jordansson

Anders Pousette

Urmi Nanda-Biswas

Jatin Patel

The book: Understanding Attractive Work in a Globalized World

The book ”Understanding Attractive Work in a Globalized World”, Springer förlag, can be ordered from