Thursday, March 29, 2012

Book Reviews: "Age, Gender and Work: Small Information Technology Firms in the New Economy"

Kane X. Faucher in the Western News has reviewed The University of British Columbia Press's Age, Gender, and Work: Small Information Technology Firms in the New Economy edited by Julie Ann McMullin, and published in 2011. According to Faucher, this book is a culmination of the Workforce Aging in a New Economy research program (WANE), present findings after seven years of research related to the fact that "the acceleration on the 'information superhighway' will be spotted with accidents, of which we may count those who suffer age and gender discrimination in the IT workplace."
A full complement of case studies, statistics and detailed analysis shines an unflattering light on small IT firms in Canada, but one can hope that rigorous studies such as these may become a foundation for broad initiatives of awareness. With all the concern about obsolescence in the IT industry, it is the old attitudes and assumptions about age and gender that need to be upgraded.
An earlier review in Business New Technology stated that the "volume examines how women and older workers in small IT companies are disproportionately vulnerable to economic uncertainty within their industry," and that "the authors explore how gender and age affect work and workplace culture to produce a fresh contribution to the literature on inequality."

Sources: Western News "Read All Over reviews, March" (March 29, 2012); Business New Technology Review (February 12, 2012)

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