Does the Gender of Directors Matter?
Harvard University - Edmond J. Safra Center for Ethics; Michigan State University
December 2, 2013
I examine relatively gender-balanced boards of business companies in which the Israeli government holds a substantial equity interest. I construct a novel database based on the detailed minutes of 402 board and committee meetings of eleven such companies. I find that boards that included critical masses of at least three directors of each gender, and particularly of three women, were approximately twice as likely to request further information and to take an initiative, compared to boards without such critical masses. The ROE and net-profit-margin of these companies is also significantly larger if they have at least three women directors.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 64
Keywords: boards of directors, gender, active boards, firm performance
JEL Classification: D71, D73, G30, J01, J16, L21, M10working papers series
Date posted: June 23, 2011 ; Last revised: December 3, 2013
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