Sex Roles

, Volume 51, Issue 11–12, pp 631–645 | Cite as

Gender Stereotypes and the Attribution of Leadership Traits: A Cross-Cultural Comparison

  • Sabine Sczesny
  • Janine Bosak
  • Daniel Neff
  • Birgit Schyns


In this study, we analyzed cultural variations of managerial gender typing, that is, that managers are perceived as possessing traits that are part of the masculine stereotype. Management students of both sexes from three different countries—Australia, Germany, and India—estimated the percentage to which one of three stimulus groups, that is, executives-in-general (no gender specification), male executives, or female executives, possesses person-orientedand task-oriented leadership traits. Participants also rated the importance of these characteristics for the respective group. Furthermore, another group of participants described themselves regarding the two types of traits and their importance for themselves. Altogether, the results indicate a less traditional view of leadership compared to previous findings, which is very similar in all three countries. Nevertheless, there exists an interculturally shared view of a female-specific leadership competence according to which women possess a higher person orientation than men. The self-descriptions of the female and male management students regarding person- and task-oriented traits were found to be very similar.

leadership self-perception gender role attitudes stereotyped attitudes cross cultural psychology 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, Inc. 2004

Authors and Affiliations

  • Sabine Sczesny
    • 1
    • 3
  • Janine Bosak
    • 1
  • Daniel Neff
    • 1
  • Birgit Schyns
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Social PsychologyUniversity of MannheimGermany
  2. 2.Department of Human Resource SciencesUniversity of TilburgThe Netherlands
  3. 3.Department of Social PsychologyUniversität Mannheim, Lehrstuhl für SozialpsychologieGermany

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