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School of Business | Department of Communication | International Business Communication | 2011
Thesis number: 12588
Wanted? ’Western’ white-collar women, ’western’ working men - genders and employment in communication for immigrants
Author: Bodström, Erna
Title: Wanted? ’Western’ white-collar women, ’western’ working men - genders and employment in communication for immigrants
Year: 2011  Language: eng
Department: Department of Communication
Academic subject: International Business Communication
Index terms: yritysviestintä; business communication; kansainvälinen; international; maahanmuutto; immigration; sukupuoli; gender; työ; work; työllisyys; employment; viestintä; communication; kulttuurierot; cultural differences
Pages: 107
Full text:
» hse_ethesis_12588.pdf pdf  size:2 MB (1083228)
Key terms: gender; immigration; migration; employment; communication; cross-cultural communication; intercultural communication; international business communication; discourse analysis; image analysis
The objective of the study was to research how genders and employment intertwine in communication materials aimed at immigrants. The study focused on a booklet titled Working in Finland, produced by the Ministry of Employment and the Economy, to find answers to the two research questions of the study: (1) How are genders and employment presented in the material? and (2) What are the members of the hypothetical audience like, based on the textual and pictorial components of the material?

Since the research data entailed both text and images, three qualitative methods were used to analyse the data: (1) discourse analysis to look at the text, (2) image analysis to read the images, and (3) integration analysis to evaluate the interaction between the text and the images. The theoretical framework of the study was, in an interdisciplinary way, based on gender studies, migration research and the communication discipline.

From the data analysis, five main findings were defined. The first three findings answered to the first and the two latter findings to the second research question. (1) The research data portrayed paid-employment of women as a peculiar cultural trait, whereas paid-employment of men was presented as self-evident and natural. (2) The data reinforced and reproduced the gender segregation of the employment field by, in particular, depicting women in professions requiring higher education and men in occupations requiring little education. (3) The study, additionally, illustrated how the equal rights between genders are used as a symbol of cultural differences, hence placing women at the border of the nation. (4) Based on the study, the preferable immigrant workforce is culturally fairly similar to the culture of Finland. (5) The studied material does not, however, seem to encourage finding employment, even though the material is titled Working in Finland. Furthermore, it is likely that similar patterns may be present in other communications with immigrants. Thus, the findings of the study suggest that the Ministry of Employment and the Economy and other producers of communication materials for immigrants should pay more attention to how genders and employment are presented and to what kind of audience the materials are aimed at.
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