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Demographic category membership and leadership in small groups : a social identity analysis

Hogg, Michael A. , Fielding, Kelly , Johnson, Daniel M., Masser, Barbara M. , Russell, Emily , & Svensson, Alicia (2006) Demographic category membership and leadership in small groups : a social identity analysis. The Leadership Quarterly, 17(4), pp. 335-350.

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Abstract

Developing the social identity theory of leadership (e.g., [Hogg, M. A. (2001). A social identity theory of leadership. Personality and Social Psychology Review, 5, 184–200]), an experiment (N=257) tested the hypothesis that as group members identify more strongly with their group (salience) their evaluations of leadership effectiveness become more strongly influenced by the extent to which their demographic stereotype-based impressions of their leader match the norm of the group (prototypicality). Participants, with more or less traditional gender attitudes (orientation), were members, under high or low group salience conditions (salience), of non-interactive laboratory groups that had “instrumental” or “expressive” group norms (norm), and a male or female leader (leader gender). As predicted, these four variables interacted significantly to affect perceptions of leadership effectiveness. Reconfiguration of the eight conditions formed by orientation, norm and leader gender produced a single prototypicality variable. Irrespective of participant gender, prototypical leaders were considered more effective in high then low salience groups, and in high salience groups prototypical leaders were more effective than less prototypical leaders. Alternative explanations based on status characteristics and role incongruity theory do not account well for the findings. Implications of these results for the glass ceiling effect and for a wider social identity analysis of the impact of demographic group membership on leadership in small groups are discussed.

Impact and interest:

26 citations in Scopus
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20 citations in Web of Science®

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ID Code: 31596
Item Type: Journal Article
Keywords: Social identity, Gender, Demographic categories, Ambivalent sexism
DOI: 10.1016/j.leaqua.2006.04.007
ISSN: 1048-9843
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > PSYCHOLOGY AND COGNITIVE SCIENCES (170000) > PSYCHOLOGY (170100)
Divisions: Past > QUT Faculties & Divisions > Faculty of Science and Technology
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2006 Elsevier.
Copyright Statement: Reproduced in accordance with the publisher' s copyright policy.
Deposited On: 31 Mar 2010 14:13
Last Modified: 29 Feb 2012 23:54

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