Date on Master's Thesis/Doctoral Dissertation


Document Type

Master's Thesis

Degree Name



Educational Leadership, Evaluation and Organizational Development

Degree Program

Human Resources and Organization Development, MS

Committee Chair

Herd, Ann

Committee Co-Chair (if applicable)

Vidoni, Carla

Committee Member

Vidoni, Carla

Committee Member

Cumberland, Denise

Committee Member

Alagaraja, Meera

Author's Keywords

implicit leadership; gender stereotype; intersectionality; HR practitioners; cross-cultural research


Among the many factors studied in relation to the women and leadership equality gap are gender stereotypes, implicit leadership theories, and the congruity of gender role expectations (Eagly, & Karau, 2002). Multiple studies in the scholarly literature support the finding that men, rather than women, are more likely to be seen as leaders (Bierma, 2016; Eagly, & Schmidt, 2001), and this finding appears to be robust across some cultures (Schein, 2001). While the scholarly research on women and leadership has been burgeoning, few research studies have investigated how human resource (HR) practitioner literature addresses themes related to women and leadership (Hanscome, & Cervero, 2003). Human Resource processes and practitioner decisions relating to selection and promotion, development opportunities, compensation, performance management, and other employment conditions affect women’s and men’s careers. Likewise, investigating practitioner literature in the United States (U.S.), as well as other countries is a worthwhile endeavor to gain an understanding of themes relating to women and leadership cross-culturally. The purpose of this content analysis study is to investigate themes relating to women and leadership in HR practitioner literature found in the U.S. and Brazil, which has the second largest economy in the Western hemisphere. Findings and implications are explored based on scholarly literature on women and leadership and culture, and themes pertaining to implicit leadership theories and gender stereotypes, role congruity, power relations, and intersectionality.