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Together We Have Impact: Exploring Gendered Experiences in Outdoor Leadership

Sandy Allen-Craig, Tonia Gray, Rylie Charles, Teresa Socha, Marg Cosgriff, Denise Mitten, TA Loeffler

Abstract


Recent dialogue in outdoor leadership has led to the realization that more care and attention is required to ensure the profession receives the benefits of diverse perspectives. In this paper, we report on stories gathered through feminist narrative inquiry via art-based approaches from 32 participants attending one of three outdoor conferences in Australia. The arts-based workshops aimed to provide a safe space for participants to reflect upon how gender may have influenced their outdoor leadership journey. Three key gender-related themes emerged through a thematic analysis of the reflective process: (1) noninclusive practices, (2) inclusive practices, and (3) suggestions to increase equity and inclusivity to embrace and enact. Further exploration of these themes highlighted the value of single-gender environments and the influence of supportive mentors while illuminating the societal privileges, unconscious entitlement, and implicit biases prevailing in the profession. Finally, we draw attention to gender erasure and the imbalance in voice and suggest collaborative efforts that move the outdoor leadership profession forward and ensure the benefits of diverse perspectives are received.

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Keywords


outdoor leadership; implicit bias; gender; feminist narrative inquiry; art-based research

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References


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DOI: https://doi.org/10.18666/JOREL-2020-V12-I1-9937

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