Are the organizational networks of the solidarity economy gendered? Which are the network mechanisms responsible for gender-based inequalities in these settings? These are the main research questions addressed by a new article co-authored by GenTIC researcher Natalia Garrido-Skurkowicz and Christian Steglich, a researcher at the Interuniversity Centre for Social Science Theory and Methodology (University of Groningen) and at the Institute for Analytical Sociology (Linköping University).
The paper presents the findings of Natalia Garrido-Skurkowicz’s doctoral research and contributes to the study of network inequalities by identifying patterns based on gender in a cooperative context. The authors focus on 84 organizations from the Network of Solidarity Economy (XES for ‘Xarxa d’Economia Solidaria’), which is one of the main actors in the social and solidarity economy in Catalonia. They applied statistical network models to identify mechanisms in empirical data collected from the solidarity economy in Barcelona.
The results show that in interorganizational networks from the solidarity economy, gender inequalities might not be operating as in more competitive environments from mainstream economics. Reciprocation and transitive closure are important mechanisms for understanding the network structures of advice-seeking and economic collaboration. Likewise, the research findings indicate that men do not actively avoid collaboration with women and that women tend to selectively ask less advice from men, which goes against stereotypical expectations.