Do Professional Women and Tradeswomen in the South African Construction Industry Share Common Employment Barriers despite Progressive Government Legislation?

TitleDo Professional Women and Tradeswomen in the South African Construction Industry Share Common Employment Barriers despite Progressive Government Legislation?
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2012
AuthorsEnglish, J, Le Jeune, K
JournalJournal of Professional Issues in Engineering Education and Practice
Volume138
Issue2
Pagination145-152
Date Published2012
Publication Languageeng
Keywordsbarriers , CONSTRUCTION , Employment , Legislation , SOUTH , Women
AbstractThe postapartheid period in South African history will most likely be recorded as the most positive legislative period for women ever, yet the construction industry appears to exclude women, both professionally and at skills and crafts level. The paper aims to classify, list, and discuss the common characteristics and effects of the barriers to women entering construction at all levels, professionally and in trades, or having entered the industry, retaining their employment. Besides cataloguing the barriers, initiatives to overcome or circumvent barriers are also investigated. The paper reviews the results from four separate studies undertaken in Cape Town between 2005 and 2007, all of which used mixed-method research design approaches. The conclusions drawn from the research indicate that South African women in professional and trade employment in the construction industry have many common barriers, and these barriers are the same ones experienced by their counterparts employed in international construction industries. However, because of the paradigm shift in societal values brought on by the move from apartheid to democratic rule in South Africa, a platform for change has been created. This is strongly reinforced by legislation encapsulating the government’s drive to include women in all aspects of economic activity. The legislation in question is the South African Construction Sector Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment (BBBEE) Charter, 2006, which purports to bring about substantial change in the gender composition of the construction sector. It is imperative that in the future, the research monitor and plot the continued barrier breakdown progress initiated by government legislation to encourage further and other initiatives.
DOI10.1061/(ASCE)EI.1943-5541.0000095

Discipline: 

Subject: 

Publication: