Professors on the Board: Do They Contribute to Society Outside the Classroom?

37 Pages Posted: 28 Jul 2015 Last revised: 6 Apr 2017

See all articles by Charles H. Cho

Charles H. Cho

York University - Schulich School of Business

Jay Jung

City, University of London - Cass Business School

Byungjin Kwak

KAIST-Graduate School of Finance

Jaywon Lee

Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST); Sejong University

Choong-Yuel Yoo

KAIST College of Business

Date Written: March 1, 2017

Abstract

According to our data, 38.5% of S&P 1500 firms have at least one professor on their boards. Given the lack of research examining the roles and effects of academic faculty as members of boards of directors (professor-directors) on corporate outcomes, this study investigates whether firms with professor-directors are more likely to exhibit higher corporate social responsibility (CSR) performance ratings. Results indicate that firms with professor-directors do exhibit higher CSR performance ratings than those without. However, the influence of professor-directors on firm CSR performance ratings depends on their academic background — the positive association between the presence of professor-directors and firm CSR performance ratings is significant only when their academic background is specialized (e.g., science, engineering and medicine). Finally, this positive association weakens when professor-directors hold an administrative position at their universities.

Keywords: academic, board of directors, corporate governance, corporate social responsibility, professor

JEL Classification: M14, M40, G30

Suggested Citation

Cho, Charles H. and Jung, Jay Heon and Kwak, Byungjin and Lee, Jaywon and Yoo, Choong-Yuel, Professors on the Board: Do They Contribute to Society Outside the Classroom? (March 1, 2017). Journal of Business Ethics, March 2017, Vol. 141 (2), pp. 393-409. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2636809

Charles H. Cho

York University - Schulich School of Business ( email )

4700 Keele Street
Toronto, Ontario M3J 1P3
Canada

HOME PAGE: http://schulich.yorku.ca/faculty/charles-cho

Jay Heon Jung (Contact Author)

City, University of London - Cass Business School ( email )

106 Bunhill Row
London, EC1Y 8TZ
United Kingdom

HOME PAGE: http://www.jayheonjung.com

Byungjin Kwak

KAIST-Graduate School of Finance ( email )

87 Hoegiro
Dongdaemun-Gu
Seoul, 130-722
Korea
+82-2-958-3417 (Phone)

Jaywon Lee

Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST) ( email )

Korea, Republic of (South Korea)

Sejong University ( email )

143-743 Seoul
Korea, Republic of (South Korea)

Choong-Yuel Yoo

KAIST College of Business ( email )

85 Hoegiro, Dongdaemoon-gu
Seoul, 02455
Korea, Republic of (South Korea)

HOME PAGE: http://www.business.kaist.edu/faculty/cyoo

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