Gender, mentoring and social capital in the National Health Service (NHS) in Scotland, UK

Saquifa Seraj, Maria Tsouroufli, Mohamed Branine

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This chapter investigates the role of gender, mentoring and social capital and contributes to literature about the career development of women in senior management roles in the National Health Service of the UK. It draws on a doctoral study of senior-level managers in a Scottish NHS Board. The data collected are: (i) documentary; (ii) quantitative; and (iii) qualitative. The quantitative data are collected through questionnaires, while the source of qualitative data is in-depth semi-structured interviews. The doctoral study is embedded within an interpretivist and feminist paradigm. Although access to mentoring and social capital was seen as likely to enhance the career progression of females to senior managerial roles, gendered work and family expectations, gendered organisational culture, and normative performances of gendered senior management were identified as obstacles in taking advantages of mentoring and social capital. To the best of our knowledge, this is the only piece of work that explicitly investigates the role of mentoring and social capital in managing gender diversity at the senior managerial positions of the NHS.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationGender, careers and inequalities in medicine and medical education
Subtitle of host publicationinternational perspectives
EditorsMaria Tsouroufli
Place of PublicationBingley
PublisherEmerald Group Publishing Ltd.
Number of pages26
ISBN (Electronic)9781784416898
ISBN (Print)9781784416904
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2015

Publication series

NameInternational Perspectives on Equality, Diversity and Inclusion
PublisherEmerald Group Publishing Ltd.
ISSN (Print)2051-2333


  • Senior managers
  • Gender
  • Managing diversity
  • Glass-ceiling
  • Career progression
  • Mentoring
  • Social capital


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