Does the Gender of Directors Matter?

Miriam Schwartz-Ziv

Michigan State University

May 2, 2013

Edmond J. Safra Working Papers, No. 8

How does gender-balance affect the working of boards of directors? I examine boards that have been required for two decades to be 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 board-committee meetings of eleven such companies. I find that boards that had critical masses of at least three directors of each gender in attendance, and particularly of three women, were approximately twice as likely both to request further information and to take an initiative, compared to boards that did not have such critical masses. Consistent with these findings, the ROE and net profit margin of these type of companies is significantly larger in companies that have at least three women directors. Taken together, the study demonstrates that gender-balanced boards are more active, and that firms with gender-balanced boards exhibit better financial performance.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 41

Keywords: Institutional Corruption, Gender equality, Corporate governance, Corporate boards

Download This Paper

Date posted: April 29, 2013 ; Last revised: December 4, 2014

Suggested Citation

Schwartz-Ziv, Miriam, Does the Gender of Directors Matter? (May 2, 2013). Edmond J. Safra Working Papers, No. 8. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=2257867 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2257867

Contact Information

Miriam Schwartz-Ziv (Contact Author)
Michigan State University ( email )
315 Eppley Center
East Lansing, MI 48824-1122
United States
Feedback to SSRN

Paper statistics
Abstract Views: 1,156
Downloads: 209
Download Rank: 15,235

© 2015 Social Science Electronic Publishing, Inc. All Rights Reserved.  FAQ   Terms of Use   Privacy Policy   Copyright   Contact Us
This page was processed by apollo6 in 0.344 seconds