chapter  7
29 Pages

Occupational Sex Composition, Cultural Contexts and Social Capital Formation: Cases of the United States and Taiwan


Researchers interested in social ties and their impact on inequality have long observed gender diff erences in interpersonal networks (Ibarra 1992, 1993; Lin 1999b, 2000). Compared to men, women are more likely to build their social networks around kinship. They tend to have a larger number, a higher proportion and a more diverse kin ties than men do (Marsden 1987; Moore 1990). When it comes to job-related contacts, women tend to know people in fewer occupations and in positions with lower social prestige and infl uence (Brass 1985; Campbell 1988; Erickson 2005; Kanter 1976; Lin, Fu, and Hsung 2001; Miyata, Ikeda, and Kobayashi 2008). In addition, women’s personal networks are found to be more homogeneous than men’s (Renzulli, Aldrich, and Moody 2000). All these diff erences lead women to have less access than men to resources that generate economic returns, such as high-quality job leads, sponsorship from infl uential actors within organizations and information required for business start-ups (Huff man and Torres 2002; Marsden and Gorman 2001; McBrier 2003; Renzulli, Aldrich, and Moody 2000; van Emmerik 2006).