Title: Glass ceiling? What glass ceiling? A qualitative study of how women view the glass ceiling in public relations and communications management
Journal / Publication: Journal of Public Relations Research
Pages: 27 – 55
Authors: Wrigley, Brenda J.
The glass ceiling persists for women in public relations and communications management, despite increasing feminization of these fields. This qualitative study seeks to identify factors that support and perpetuate the problem of the glass ceiling for women in public relations and corporate communications management. In-depth interviews and focus groups were used to allow 27 women to give their views on the glass ceiling. I suggest a new theoretical concept, negotiated resignation, for explaining the psychological process by which women come to terms with the glass ceiling. Study participants identified five factors contributing to the glass ceiling, as well as a number of strategies women can use to overcome the glass ceiling. I examine the findings from both a radical feminist and liberal feminist perspective. Recommendations for educators, students, and practitioners are included in this study, as are some comments from the 27 women who worked as managers in both agency and corporate environments.