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A new research from YouGov found that less than half of young people across APAC believe they conform to gender stereotypes. According to the findings, on a scale of 0-10 (where 0 is completely masculine and 10 is completely feminine), under a third of women (31%) aged 16-29 say they are almost entirely feminine (at level 9 or 10), while nearly half (49%) of women over 45 do.

The divide is also apparent in men; with 39% of 16-29 year old males across the region define themselves as either completely masculine (0) or near-completely masculine (1). In comparison, 56% of over-45 males share the same sentiment.

YouGov MY findings

The generation divide is also seen in attitudes towards masculinity and femininity more generally; with 67% of those aged over 45 see masculinity as either very positive or fairly positive. On the other hand, only 58% of 16-29 year olds feel the same.

This divide is more muted when it comes to attitudes to femininity, though the trend is the same; 58% of over 45s view it as positive, compared with 54% of 16-29 year olds.

On the other hand, young people are also less likely to believe that they conform to gender stereotypes in comparison to older generations. According to the survey, 43% of 16-29 year olds either strongly or slightly agree that they conform to gender stereotypes. The number stands at 51% for those over 45.

ALSO READ: How to develop your unconscious gender bias strategy

However, when asked to select three traits that respondents most associate with each gender, generations seem to converge.

The top three that 16-19 year olds most strongly associate with masculinity are strength (55%), assertiveness (27%) and intelligence (24%). On the other hand, sensitivity (42%), emotional (33%) and affectionate (29%) were chosen for femininity.

In comparison, those over 45 identify strength (56%), assertiveness (31%) and decisiveness (25%) as the traits they most associate with masculinity; while sensitivity (47%), emotional (36%) and affectionate (32%) for femininity.

Yet, despite having shared ideas about what constitutes masculinity and femininity, the majority of those polled (56%) believe that they are social constructs. This view is most strongly held in the Philippines (68%), Thailand (60%) and Australia (58%), but is less widely held in Vietnam, where 39% of respondents agree.

APAC residents are also divided about the impact that gender roles have on society, with 39% agreeing that gender roles are a barrier to equality. While those in Thailand (49%), Singapore (45%) and Australia (44%) are most likely to believe this to be the case, just a quarter of Indonesians (24%) agree.

YouGov full findings

Lead Photo / 123RF

Graphs/ YouGov

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This article was first published in Human Resources Online Bulletin and is reproduced with permission. Original article can be found at http://www.humanresourcesonline.net

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