More than a Woman: Insights into Corporate Governance after the French Sex Quota

41 Pages Posted: 20 Aug 2014 Last revised: 30 Jun 2015

See all articles by Darren Rosenblum

Darren Rosenblum

Pace Law School; University of California, Berkeley - Berkeley Comparative Equality & Anti-Discrimination Law Study Group

Daria Roithmayr

USC Gould School of Law

Date Written: August 18, 2014

Abstract

In 2011, France enacted a Corporate Board Quota to establish a forty percent floor for either sex on corporate boards. Existing literature presumes that women will change the way firms function and that their presence in upper management will improve both governance and financial returns. To assess the potential impact of the quota, we interviewed twenty-four current and former corporate board members. Our analysis of these interviews generates two findings. First our results indicate that, at least in the view of board members, the sex quota has had an impact on the process of board decision making, but adding women has not affected the substance of decision-making. Second, our findings suggest for the first time that adding women to a board may well have a substantive impact on decision making, not because of the sex of newly added member but because they more likely to be outsiders. French participants reported that newly added female members affected substantive decision making because they were more likely to be foreign, to be expert in a wider range of areas, and to be drawn from non-elite networks than their male counterparts.

Suggested Citation

Rosenblum, Darren and Roithmayr, Daria, More than a Woman: Insights into Corporate Governance after the French Sex Quota (August 18, 2014). USC CLASS Research Paper No. 14-27; Indiana Law Review, Vol. 48, No. 889, 2015; USC CLASS Research Paper No. 14-27; USC Law Legal Studies Paper No. 14-35. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2482720 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2482720

Darren Rosenblum

Pace Law School ( email )

78 North Broadway
White Plains, NY 10603
United States
914 422 4663 (Phone)

University of California, Berkeley - Berkeley Comparative Equality & Anti-Discrimination Law Study Group

Boalt Hall
Berkeley, CA 94720-7200
United States

Daria Roithmayr (Contact Author)

USC Gould School of Law ( email )

699 Exposition Boulevard
Los Angeles, CA 90089-0071
United States
213-740-6228 (Phone)

Register to save articles to
your library

Register

Paper statistics

Downloads
297
rank
95,368
Abstract Views
1,815
PlumX