Document Type

Theses, Ph.D


Available under a Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial Share Alike 4.0 International Licence


Industrial relations, *training, Sociology, Women's and gender studies, Family studies, Interdisciplinary, 6.5 OTHER HUMANITIES

Publication Details

To School of Culinary Arts and Food Technology Technological University Dublin For the Award of a PhD, September 2020.


As an original piece of research, this dissertation investigates the factors that contribute to gender inequality in the chef profession in Ireland. The aims of the study sought to establish the extent of gender inequality and the factors that contribute to it in the chef profession in Ireland. The first national gender inequality survey was designed to collect empirical and qualitative data of the chef profession. Joan Acker’s (1990) original theory of gendered organisations and Connell’s (1995) concept of hegemonic masculinity were employed to undertake a systematic gender analysis of the data emanating the survey. This analysis reveals, for the first time, the extent of gender inequality in the roles and work environments in which men and women chefs work and suggests reasons why this occurs. A critical gender analysis of the qualitative data revealed the factors that women chefs identify as barriers to gender equality and those that need to be addressed to advance gender equality. The gender analysis of both the empirical and qualitative data in this study suggests that Acker’s (1990) theory remains relevant for assessing gender inequality in twenty first century work organizations with caveats. The findings suggest that education should be considered as a possible site of inequality in addition to Acker’s (1990) five interconnecting practises and processes of the division of labour, individual identities, workplace interactions, cultural symbols and images and the organisation logic of gendered organisations.