The concept of merit in the Australian Defence Force

This project is exploring how female and male personnel in the Australian Defence Force frame the idea of merit; a construct which sits at the heart of efforts to redress gender inequality. We are addressing several pertinent questions, such as How is merit defined and explained in a military setting?; How does gender identity shape understandings of merit, especially in relation to special treatment and stigmatisation?; and How do attributions of merit affect career development, promotion and retention? The findings will inform ongoing debates about how the notion of merit is defined and practised in the Australian Defence Force and in organisational settings more generally.

Gill Kirton (Queen Mary University of London)