Occupational Sex Segregation and Women's Early Career Job Shifts


Journal Article

Previous research has found considerable mobility between “male” and “female” occupations across the work life. This article uses employment histories from the Washington State Career Development Study to examine the frequency and determinants of jobs shifts that take women across gender-type boundaries. It was found that many women go between sex-typical and sex-atypical occupations with a change of jobs. Higher work commitment tends to slow moves from male to female occupations, and higher job rewards slow moves across occupational gender types. But family variables do not constrain moves to male occupations nor speed moves to female ones. Thus the results do not always fit with stereotypes about characteristics of predominately male and female jobs. The article suggests that further research is needed to identify career lines and career-line segments by gender type, rather than relying on the sex composition of a particular occupation or even job. © 1992, SAGE PUBLICATIONS. All rights reserved.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Rosenfeld, RA; Spenner, KI

Published Date

  • January 1, 1992

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 19 / 4

Start / End Page

  • 424 - 449

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1552-8464

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0730-8884

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1177/0730888492019004005

Citation Source

  • Scopus