, Volume 27, Issue 3, pp 147-168,
Open Access This content is freely available online to anyone, anywhere at any time.
Date: 26 Oct 2010

A stalled revolution? Gender role attitudes in Australia, 1986–2005


This paper examines trends over time in attitudes to gender equality in Australia. We use data from repeated cross-sectional surveys in Australia to investigate trends in beliefs about men’s and women’s work and family roles between 1986 and 2005. We find that men are consistently more conservative than women, that younger cohorts tend to be less conservative than older cohorts, but those born between 1960 and 1980 are more egalitarian on some issues than those born after 1980. There is also evidence that the overall trend toward more egalitarian gender attitudes is most marked in Australia up until the mid-1990s with the trend flattening and in some cases, even reversing after this period. The paper concludes that there is currently a period of relative stability in gender attitudes in Australia, but with some tendency toward more conservative views.