Beyond the Glass Ceiling: Does Gender Matter?

70 Pages Posted: 20 Sep 2009 Last revised: 23 Jul 2012

Renee B. Adams

University of New South Wales, Department of Banking and Finance; ECGI; FIRN; ABFER

Patricia Funk

University of Lugano

Multiple version iconThere are 2 versions of this paper

Date Written: December 1, 2009

Abstract

The representation of women in top corporate officer positions is steadily increasing. However, little is known about the impact this will have. A large literature documents that women are different from men in their choices and in their preferences, but most of this literature relies on samples of college students or workers at lower levels in the corporate hierarchy. If women must be like men to break the glass ceiling, we might expect gender differences to disappear among top executives. In contrast, using a large survey of directors, we show that female and male directors differ systematically in their core values and risk attitudes. While certain population gender differences disappear at the director level, others do not. Consistent with the findings for the general population, female directors are more benevolent and universally concerned, but less power-oriented than men. However, they are less traditional and security-oriented than their male counterparts. Furthermore, female directors are slightly more risk-loving than male directors. This suggests that having a women on the board need not lead to more risk-averse decision-making.

Keywords: Female Directors, Directors, Gender, Boards, Values, Risk

JEL Classification: J16, G30

Suggested Citation

Adams, Renee B. and Funk, Patricia, Beyond the Glass Ceiling: Does Gender Matter? (December 1, 2009). UPF Working Paper Series; ECGI - Finance Working Paper No. 273/2010. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1475152 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1475152

Renée B. Adams

University of New South Wales, Department of Banking and Finance ( email )

Sydney, NSW 2052
Australia
+61(2)93854280 (Phone)

ECGI

c/o ECARES ULB CP 114
B-1050 Brussels
Belgium

HOME PAGE: http://www.ecgi.org

FIRN

C/- University of Queensland Business School
St Lucia, 4071 Brisbane
Queensland
Australia

HOME PAGE: http://www.firn.org.au

ABFER

BIZ 2 Storey 4, 04-05
1 Business Link
Singapore, 117592
Singapore

Patricia Funk (Contact Author)

University of Lugano ( email )

Via Giuseppe Buffi 13
Lugano, Ticino 6900
Switzerland

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