DIK - Deutsche Islam Konferenz - Study: Gender Roles

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Gender roles among Germans and Immigrants of Christian and Muslim religious affiliation

The 2013 Gender Role Study of the Federal Office for Migration and Refugees (Bundesamt für Migration und Flüchtlinge - BAMF), which was drawn up as supporting research for the German Islam Conference (Deutsche Islam Konferenz - DIK) , addresses the question of gender equity. The investigation tackles the question of the degree to which Muslim and Christian immigrants are in favour of hierarchical gender relations and practice them in their everyday lives. The study presents a differentiated picture of the division of roles between the genders. It reaches the conclusion that the majority of both Muslims and Christians are in favour of equal rights for men and women. This means that, taken as a whole, there is a clear commitment towards gender equity.

3,036 respondents in the BAMF’s study on gender roles

More than 3,000 individuals of various origins and religious affiliations were surveyed in the BAMF’s Gender Role Study. These were Muslims from Turkey and Iran, from South Eastern Europe, from South Asia, North Africa and the Middle East, as well as Christians from Germany, Italy, Poland and Romania.

Equal rights: a value that is firmly entrenched

The results of the study show that equal rights between the genders constitute a firmly-entrenched fundamental value among all the groups surveyed and that they are not placed in question. The views held on the roles which women and men should assume both in the household and at work however vary much more widely.

Religious affiliation: not an explanation for different gender roles

The central factors explaining different gender role models are above all socioeconomic factors such as the level of education and age. Religious affiliation, in contrast, tends to be irrelevant. Over and above this, persons who attach greater importance to religion in their everyday lives adopt more traditional gender role models. This applies to practicing Muslims and Christians in equal measure.

Labour force participation: equal participation is wanted by everyone

Women more frequently live in a traditional employment constellation when they have small children under the age of six. This affects Muslim women in particular because Muslim households more frequently have pre-school children. The majority of couples would however like women to make a greater contribution towards earned income. Regardless of their religion and origin, the majority of men and women surveyed expressed the wish for a better integration of women into the labour market.

The study was drawn up by: Inna Becher and Yasemin El-Menouar

The report is only available in German. [Download]

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