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TSVC | Tourism Students Virtual Conference

Gender and Tourism Employment – Analysing how women are treated in the workplace specifically in the hospitality industry looking at gender segregation and wage difference

Gender and Tourism Employment – Analysing how women are treated in the workplace specifically in the hospitality industry looking at gender segregation and wage difference
Author: Olivia Luckcuck
1 Commentries
Abstract: A report on social tourism exploring gender segregation and wage difference in the hospitality industry.

Gender discrimination and segregation are still prevalent in today's equal society. Despite the fact that some people believe that gender discrimination is mostly a thing of the past, it remains a persistent yet invisible barrier that affects prominent areas of life such as the workplace. This paper will discuss how gender segregation affects female employment and how this affects the industry, as well as the key factors that can influence change in the sector to support female workers. Defining gender segregation and the vertical and horizontal levels of segregation, as well as how gender discrimination affects the pay gap. Furthermore, the consequences of gender discrimination in hospitality in the tourism industry, which is stifling the growth of female employees, are being investigated. Although progress has been made toward gender equality, I believe there is still much that can be done to change and improve the industry to make it more appealing to female workers and to ensure that equality is maintained.

The research stated the problems in society affecting the growth of women in the hospitality industry and the working conditions that make them underappreciated and underrepresented by incorporating secondary research from a variety of different sources, such as Zhong et al., 2011. Segregating women based on their gender and assuming that they lack the dependability and responsibility to hold managerial positions in hospitality. I intend to demonstrate to the audience the effects of gender inequality on the hospitality and tourism industries, as well as potential measures and changes that can be implemented to progress for future change and development. Considering the factors that contribute to women being perceived as less competent than men. Given that women make up more than half of the labour force in the industry, they earn 14.7 percent less than men and hold less than one-fifth of leadership positions in the tourism industry, particularly in the hospitality sector (UNWTO, 2019). My goal is to increase reader awareness which will lead too a better understanding of the gender problems.

According to Lee and Kang (1998), women working in the hotel and catering industries in South Korea earn only 69.9% of the wages offered to their male counterparts. Male Norwegian tourism employees typically earn about 20% more than their female counterparts. This implies that this is a global issue rather than a local one, and that researching solutions to these issues allows for future growth and development. Labor authorities must examine the performance of the Equal Pay Act in the hospitality industry, because gender discrimination accounts for the majority of wage disparities.

The most pressing issue is how women are treated in the hospitality industry, which is dominated by men. Women are not supported to advance to higher managerial positions in a male-dominated workplace. Some members of the audience may disagree because society has the stereotype that women's place is at home. The research is adequate and growing. I intend to write about wage discrimination, the lack of support for females aspiring to senior management positions, sex discrimination, and how women in the hospitality industry are primarily hired in roles with less responsibility, particularly those with low pay.

This paper outlines actionable recommendations to advance female career development in the hospitality industry and formulates a reflection to advance knowledge of gender practises in the industry. This research contributes to the conference theme of 'Hopeful tourism: Reshaping and reimagining tourism,' as the theme of this paper looks into current gender equality issues that are not being investigated to find a solution to enable women to feel important and appreciated within the hospitality industry. Providing an analysis of the problems with supporting literature and proposing potential solutions to allow women to advance and have equal opportunities as men. Establishing that change is required for the hospitality industry within the tourism sector to continue to succeed at a rapid pace, using the workforce that they already have to create promotion opportunities and encourage female employees to seek a promotion to demonstrate that they are valued by their employer.

The expansion and investigation of this research would prompt the reader to consider this issue and determine whether they believe there is a problem within the hospitality industry, as well as potentially prompt companies and organisations to assess whether they discriminate against their employees and ways in which they can close the gender segregation gap. Raising awareness of this issue and allowing affected women to feel supported, as well as research being conducted to understand the reasoning behind the segregation and how long-term change can be achieved.


Beck, G. (2018). Women in the Hospitality Industry Battling Gender Inequality | Eli Broad College of Business | Michigan State University. [online] Eli Broad College of Business | Michigan State University. Available at: https://broad.msu.edu/news/women-hospitality-industry-battling-gender-inequality/. [Accessed 9 June 2022].

Lee, C., and Kang, S. (1998), ‘Measuring earnings inequality and median earnings in the tourism industry’, Tourism Management, Vol 19, No 4, pp 341–348. Available at: https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/pdf/10.5367/000000009789955152 [Accessed 11 June 2022]

Yan Grace Zhong , Sue Couch & Shane C. Blum (2011) Factors Affecting Women's Career Advancement in the Hospitality Industry: Perceptions of Students, Educators and Industry Recruiters, Journal of Hospitality & Tourism Education, 23:4, 5-13, DOI:10.1080/10963758.2011.10697015 [Accessed 9 June 2022].
Commentary Corey Fletcher 17675914
Author: Corey Fletcher

This article shows the author has deep and extensive knowledge of the topic and this is shown throughout the conference paper. The aim of this paper was to analyse how women are treated in the workspace specifically in the hospitality industry while focusing on gender segregation and wage difference. The author started this paper with a strong understanding of the topic, with a clear and detailed explanation of what they hope to achieve from the paper.

Throughout this conference paper we can see clear knowledge and facts from multiple sources such as Lee and Kang (1998), in which support the righters statements. The righter also clearly states the different types of discrimination faced, from the difference in wages and the treatment of women in the industry through lack of promotions and opportunities.

I find the authors contributions interesting, and I like how they have linked this research to another type of tourism known as ‘Hopeful tourism: Reshaping and reimaging tourism’. The researcher has also considered taking this research further by prompting the reader to determine if there is a problem within the industry and to encourage companies and organisations to close the gender segregation gap through raising awareness and other methods.

To develop this further I would encourage the righter to consider other industries such as the cruise ship industry or airline industry to see how they are tackling gender segregation in the workplace. Is there anything in which the hospitality industry could potentially learn from other major industries? How could the approach from different industries affect the hospitality industry?

Overall, the author shows a clear understanding of the issue alongside detailed justification and actionable recommendations. With the facts presented and knowledge shown from the author, I would be interested in reading the full paper to gain a further understanding of this problem, and investigate other solutions to tackle it.

Lee, C., and Kang, S. (1998), ‘Measuring earnings inequality and median earnings in the tourism industry’, Tourism Management, Vol 19, No 4, pp 341–348. Available at: https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/pdf/10.5367/000000009789955152 [Accessed 11 June 2022]