Women at the Top in Developing Countries: Evidence from Firm-Level Data

42 Pages Posted: 5 Dec 2015

See all articles by Khalid Sekkat

Khalid Sekkat

Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB)

Ariane Szafarz

Université Libre de Bruxelles, Solvay Brussels School of Economics and Management, Centre Emile Bernheim (CEB) & CERMi

Ilan Tojerow

Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB) - Department of Applied Economics (DULBEA); IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Abstract

This paper uses worldwide firm-level data to scrutinize the governance factors that favor gender diversity in leadership positions. Our results reveal that the gender of the dominant shareholder is key. The chief executive of firms with a female dominant shareholder has a significantly higher probability of being a woman than in other firms. The effect is even more pronounced when the female shareholder holds a higher share of the capital and when the firm is foreign-owned. Our results suggest that "old boys' club" ownership structures are a major impediment to the empowerment of female talent in developing countries.

Keywords: gender, diversity, ownership, leadership, CEO, development

JEL Classification: O15, J71, G32, M51, D22

Suggested Citation

Sekkat, Khalid and Szafarz, Ariane and Tojerow, Ilan, Women at the Top in Developing Countries: Evidence from Firm-Level Data. IZA Discussion Paper No. 9537. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2699433

Khalid Sekkat (Contact Author)

Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB) ( email )

Ave. Franklin D Roosevelt, 50 - C.P. 114
Brussels, B-1050
Belgium

Ariane Szafarz

Université Libre de Bruxelles, Solvay Brussels School of Economics and Management, Centre Emile Bernheim (CEB) & CERMi ( email )

50 Avenue Roosevelt
Brussels 1050
Belgium

Ilan Tojerow

Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB) - Department of Applied Economics (DULBEA) ( email )

Ave. Franklin D Roosevelt, 50
Brussels, B-1050
Belgium

HOME PAGE: http://homepages.ulb.ac.be/~itojerow/

IZA Institute of Labor Economics ( email )

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

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