Added: February 28, 2015 – Last updated: February 28, 2015


Authors: Heather Antecol and Deborah Cobb-Clark

Title: The Changing Nature of Employment-Related Sexual Harassment

Subtitle: Evidence from the U.S. Federal Government, 1978-1994

Journal: Industrial and Labor Relations Review

Volume: 57

Issue: 3

Year: April 2004

Pages: 443-461

ISSN: 0019-7939 – Find a Library: WordCat | eISSN: 2162-271X – Find a Library: WordCat

Language: English

Keywords: 20th Century | U.S. History | Types: Sexual Harassment


Link: SAGE Journals (Restricted Access)



Heather Antecol, Robert Day School of Economics and Finance, Claremont McKenna College

Deborah Cobb-Clark, Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research, University of Melbourne

Abstract: »This paper examines the changing nature of attitudes toward and reports of sexual harassment using data for 1978–94 drawn from the U.S. Merit Systems Protection Board (USMSPB) of the U.S. federal government. The authors find that although unwanted sexual behavior reported by federal government employees changed only slightly in overall incidence over the period, its pattern changed noticeably. Unwanted sexual attention by supervisors, for example, declined in incidence; crude and offensive behavior by co-workers increased; and the likelihood that harassment would occur only once (rather than repeatedly) increased. Employees’ attitudes toward sexual harassment changed markedly, with a dramatically increased willingness to define unwanted sexual behavior as sexual harassment. This trend appears to have been due not to changes in employees’ demographic, human capital, and job characteristics, but rather to structural changes in their views of what constitutes sexual harassment.« (Source: Industrial and Labor Relations Review)


  Employment-Related Sexual Harassment: Evidence and Issues (p. 444)
  U.S: Merit Systems Protection Board Data (p. 446)
  The Role of the Changing Composition of the Federal Work Force (p. 447)
  The Source of Changes in Views toward and Incidence of Sexual Harassment (p. 449)
  Determinants of Views toward Unwanted Pressure for Sexual Favors and Dates (p. 450)
  Incidents of Unwanted Sexual Behavior (p. 455)
  Changes in the Qualitative Nature of Unwanted Sexual Behavior at Work (p. 455)
  Discussion and Directions for Future Research (p. 456)
  Conclusions (p. 458)
  References (p. 461)

Wikipedia: Sexual harassment