Pushing for Gender Equality in Advertising: Gender Role Stereotypes in the United Arab Emirates

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Journal of International Consumer Marketing


© 2020 Taylor & Francis Group, LLC. Gender role stereotypes in advertising have been widely addressed by the industry and academic researchers around the world, but this research has not often extended to the Middle East. The current research focuses on consumers’ perceptions of gender role stereotypes in advertising in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), a country where traditions and culture still play a strong role. A survey of 810 residents asked questions about an advertisement they recalled, their perception of the recalled ad, their opinions about gender role stereotypes in advertising in the UAE, as well as a CHAID analysis to understand the differences in perceptions of two ads for specific products. The results found that more participants recalled an ad with a female character compared to an ad with a male character. Also, both men and women participants agreed that the main character in an ad for a household product should be a woman, but disagreed about the main character for a bank ad. Recommendations for the advertising field include targeting cultural understanding and casting more women in ads, especially to create role models for women.

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