Conference Agenda

Session
Panel 110: Gender and identity
Time:
Monday, 06/Sept/2021:
9:30am - 11:00am

Session Chair: Jan Orbie, Political Science

Presentations

Has the Role of Female Leaders Changed in Times of Crises? Will a Male-Dominated Industry Like Logistics in Germany Go a Step Forward in the COVID 19-Pandemic

Julia Hansch, Natalie Janning-Backfisch

DHBW Mannheim, Germany

The logistics industry as one of Germanys main industries (ranking third after the car industry and the retail sector) with a turnover of 263 billion € in 2017 is employing almost 3 million people. (BMVI - Logistikstandort Deutschland, 2020) The CoVid 19 pandemic is affecting the industry two-fold: on the one-hand side passenger travel is on an all-time low, whereas deliveries for people who are working from home are on the rise. Experts predict a significant negative impact of 8.6% in 2020. (o.V., 2020)

Despite significant labor market progress over the last decades, women remain heavily underrepresented in high-earnings, high-status occupations. (Bertrand et al., 2018) The gender pay gap in Germany has been locked in at 22% for the last five year with no change in sight. Similarly, the access to top management or board positions is still very difficult for women: Between 2015 (less than 5%) and 2020 (approx. 7%) a short increase amongst the C-level positions in Corporate Germany held by women can be documented (none of these being CEO). On board level, women hold 30% and more of board positions in companies that are being regulated by a mandatory gender quota, and significantly less in companies without such a mandatory quota (o.V., 12f.). Looking at the logistics industry in Germany, it is still a “man’s world”. Despite approx. 20% of the workforce being female, most companies do not have a single woman on board level (4 out of 5 management teams are strictly male).

In our research we will identify and quantify requirements of competences from female leaders in combination with specific working situations that are considered successful during the COVID-19 pandemic (Heyse & Erpenbeck, 2009, XVII f.) (Sonntag, 2007, p. 267). How will the circumstances change the perception of leaders in the traditional logistics industry in Germany? Will there be more opportunities for women or will logistics take a step back and become even less diverse?

Hypothesis 1: During crises women as leaders will be viewed as successful master of these situations; Hypothesis 2: The perception of female leaders profits from the more flexible, digital work environment and the caring leadership in these critical times;
Hypothesis 3: In times of crises the competences of new leaders should be similar to those of the current management team.



Feminist Alliances and Mobilisation against Anti-gender Movement in Turkey

Özge Zihnioğlu1, Rahime Süleymanoğlu-Kürüm2, F. Melis Cin3

1University of Liverpool; 2Bahçeşehir University, Turkey; 3Lancaster University

The rise of right-wing populism in Europe triggered anti-gender movements and campaigns associating women with family, and traditional gender roles. Such campaigns which often intersect with religious fundamentalism, neo-liberalism and austerity politics, also manifested in Turkey as the authoritarianism ushered. This paper deals with a neglected dimension of anti-gender campaigning and looks at how they cultivate counter-activism and how mobilization emerges as a response to anti-feminism in Turkey. This article first explores how anti-gender movements manifest in Turkey and moves on examining how counter-mobilization emerged in response to anti-gender movements. Thus, the paper disrupts the monolithic understanding of anti-gender movements and explore civil society resistance. Theoretically, we draw on the social movement literature, and investigate ‘alliance systems’ (Della Porta and Rucht, 1995) that feminist groups established anti-gender movement within Turkish civil society. We find that alliances enhance the feminist groups’ capacity to resist and contend, which we term as activist capital in this paper. In terms of data, we rely on a wide range of publicly available interviews of the youth and NGO organisations, their open letters and manifestos as well as 25 interviews with feminist activists who lead the major women NGOs and feminist movements in Turkey and form cross-sectional, transnational and national alliances. We argue that the ultimate aim of such counter anti-feminist mobilisation is to challenge state feminism, create autonomous feminist movement and diffuse international norms and strategies. The preliminary findings also show that this counter mobilisation build women’s co-operative constellation by creating women only safe spaces, using of feminist social media, maintaining dynamic movement led by young generation of feminists and networking with femocrats and strengthening feminist triangles.



Decolonizing and Degendering Knowledge on EU-Turkey Relations

Rahime Süleymanoğlu-Kürüm1, Ebru Turhan2

1Bahçeşehir University, Turkey; 2Turkish-German University, Turkey

Decolonizing knowledge is an up-and-coming field of study that aims to free epistemologies from Eurocentric knowledge which is mostly epitomized by white male hegemony. This paper seeks to illustrate how colonial and malestream knowledge reproduce and strengthen each other in academic literature on EU-Turkey relations. Following the entry into force of the EU-Turkey Customs Union in 1995 and the confirmation of Turkey’s candidate status in 1999, ‘EU-Turkey studies’ – as a sub-field of EU studies– progressively developed from ‘boutique to a boom field’ (Keeler 2005: 554). Yet, a recent study by Guerrina et al. (2018) identifies a ‘gender problem’ in EU studies, highlighting the dominance of malestream analysis in studying, researching and teaching the EU. Turkish academia, which produces most of the analyses on EU-Turkey relations, features a relatively high number of female researchers. As Western academic literature is used as the main departure point for studying the EU-Turkey relationship, this paper seeks to understand whether the use of colonial and Eurocentric knowledge has led to a gendered academic discourse on EU-Turkey relations or whether the female researchers have disrupted male and colonial epistemology. To this end, the paper reviews and maps the publications by male and female academics on EU-Turkey relations and the evolving citation patterns from 1996 to 2020 (divided into three sub-periods) based on an original data set comprising 26 SSCI journals and 303 articles, by utilizing directed content analysis and bibliometric approach.



Anglo-British Exceptionalism and the European ‘Other’: White Masculinity in Discourses of National Identity during Brexit

Charlotte Galpin

University of Birmingham, United Kingdom

Gender and sexuality are central to the study of politics (Smith & Lee, 2015). In scholarly analysis of the path to Brexit, Britain’s ‘exclusive’ national identity is often cited as a key driver of the vote to leave. Anglo-British exceptionalism has been found to underpin discourses of British – or rather English – identity that construct Europe or the EU as the ‘significant other’ (see e.g. Marcussen et al., 1999). However, the role of gender and race in the construction of British and English identity in relation to Europe has been overlooked. Gender scholars have already demonstrated that the 2016 EU referendum campaigns employed a toxic masculinity that glorified traditionally white ‘masculine’ traits of power and heteronormativity (Achilleos-Sarll & Martill, 2019; Higgins, 2020). The gendered dimensions of the referendum reflect wider patterns of gendered exclusion in British politics (see e.g. Miller, 2021). Yet, we know very little about how ideas about gender have contributed to constructions of Europe in discourses of British/English national identity. In this paper, I apply feminist and critical race theory to existing understandings of national and European identity. I explore how British and English identity is shaped by gender and race through processes of inclusion and exclusion in the construction of the European ‘Other’. I unpack four key gendered discourses of Anglo-British exceptionalism in the Brexit context: British sovereignty as masculine power; Britain (England) as a progressive, civilising force; Britain as a global industrial trading nation; and the English as a white Protestant ‘island race’. In these discourses, ‘Europe’ is constructed in various ways as a threat to white British or English masculinity. Through this paper, I aim to contribute not just a better understanding of the gendered and racialised dynamics of Brexit and British identity but also to the broader theoretical literature on national and European identity in Europe.



The Gender Gap In Civil State Decoration

Philipp Köker, Nele Weiher, Anja Schollmeyer

Leibniz University Hannover, Germany

State decorations are meant to recognize meritorious and noteworthy achievements in a wide range of fields. Despite this general ambition, women are still underrepresented among recipients. Historical and economic research has already highlighted such disparities, yet political science perspectives and cross-country comparative analyses are still missing. Our article contributes to scholarship by providing normative-theoretical investigation and cross-country empirical analysis of the representation of women among recipients of state decorations. Using an original data set on all 11,560 recipients of civil state decorations in Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania, 1994-2020, we find that – despite recent advances – a gender gap persists in relation to the total number of awards, the classes awarded, and categories of recognized achievements. Our findings highlight the persistence of gender inequality in yet another sphere of public life and society. Furthermore, they contribute to research on the reproduction of social power relations through state institutions and practices, and underscore the importance of the often ignored symbolic functions of heads of state.