Working Paper BETA #2022-28

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Title : Gendered professions, prestigious professions: when stereotypes condition career choices

Author(s) : Magali Jaoul-Grammare

Abstract : Despite social changes and the opening up of all professions to men and women, society continues to adhere to many stereotypes, and many professions are still considered to be feminine or masculine. In addition to gendered representations of occupations, there are also social representations linked to the social prestige associated with a profession. These two elements shape the study and professional choices of individuals. Based on this observation, the aim of this article is twofold: on the one hand, to study the representation of professions according to the degree of feminization and the degree of prestige; on the other hand, to measure the influence of the perceptions of professions on the individual choices of professional project. I use a questionnaire administered to secondary school pupils and students. The results obtained show a differentiated influence of stereotypes on career plans. It also appears that individuals tend to underrate the professions they consider ‘feminine’.

Key-words : orientation inequalities, gendered professions, social prestige, stereotypes

JEL Classification : C25, C83, D83, D91, J16