Women in Organizational Space



The purpose of this study is to investigate the physical and virtual working environment for women in Ras Al Khaimah. The space of work (internal artifacts, digital engagement and office layout) is explored for metaphor and symbolic meaning for employed women. The research approach is qualitative and forms an ethnography of a sample group of twelve-twenty women in their workplaces – public and private sectors. Data are collected in the form of work history narratives, via semi-structured interviews, and non-participant observations, conducted by these authors, assisted by trained research assistants (graduate students). Evidence, audio recordings, photographs and field-notes, are submitted to NVivo (software for qualitative research) to support content analyses. Findings will identify emergent themes of symbolic and metaphor meaning from physical and virtual spaces inhabited by these women in their organisations. The value for academic theory is two-fold; a unique contribution because the study was conducted in a previously unexplored location; a novel study of ethnographical research on the physical and digital landscape of organizations in the Middle-East. The anticipated implication for policy and praxis is the impact on recruitment, retention and progress of women because of meaning derived from their physical and virtual work-space. This investigation is geographically limited to one Emirate, which implies replication of this ethnographical study for generalizability to other regions.

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