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Women and the prospects for partnership in professional accountancy firms.

Whiting, Rosalind H.; Gammie, Elizabeth; Herbohn, Kathleen


Rosalind H. Whiting

Kathleen Herbohn


This paper examines three possible reasons (stereotypical discrimination, structural obstacles and employee's preferences) for the lack of women partners in professional accountancy firms in Australia, UK and New Zealand. Data are collected from an experimental survey and interviews of current partners. Whilst women's perceived preferences and organisational structural barriers contributed strongly to the lack of women partners in all sizes of firms, traditional stereotypical discrimination against women at the partnership decision point was only displayed in metropolitan large non-Big 4 firms, and it is suggested that this is related to intense competitive pressure and a constrained partnership resource.


WHITING, R.H., GAMMIE, E. and HERBOHN, K. 2014. Women and the prospects for partnership in professional accountancy firms. Accounting and finance [online], 55(2), pages 575-605. Available from:

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Dec 10, 2013
Online Publication Date Jan 15, 2014
Publication Date Jun 30, 2015
Deposit Date Nov 16, 2015
Publicly Available Date Jan 16, 2016
Journal Accounting and finance
Print ISSN 0810-5391
Electronic ISSN 1467-629X
Publisher Wiley
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 55
Issue 2
Pages 575-605
Keywords Professional accountancy firms; Gender; Discrimination; Structural barriers; Work preferences
Public URL


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