Date of Conferral





Public Policy and Administration


Hilda Shepeard


Few women in academia occupy the leadership role of chief information officer (CIO), yet little is known about the underlying causes for gender disparity in this role. The purpose of this causal comparative study was to investigate whether gender stereotypes may impact perceptions about managerial characteristics of CIO candidates in academic settings. The theoretical foundation for this study was Schein's 'Think Manager, Think Male' paradigm and Acker's gendered organization theory. Data were acquired from 48 hiring officials from four-year public, private, and nonprofit colleges, universities, and research institutions in the Northeastern region of the United States who completed the Schein Descriptive Index. Data were analyzed using ANOVA to determine whether gender of the hiring authority was associated with the perceived managerial skills of male, female, and non-gender-specific CIO candidates. Data analysis revealed no significant difference in male and female hiring officials' ratings of male, female, and non-gender-specific CIO candidates. The findings demonstrated the theoretical construct of Schein's 'Think Manager, Think Male' paradigm are outdated and Acker's gendered organization theory persistently exists where males' dominant in organizations and roles deemed masculine. Implications for positive social change in the area of public policy are increasing awareness to hiring officials and women seeking the role of CIO in academia about other factors such as age, ethnicity, and experience that may affect candidate selection in the role of CIO.