Board Gender Diversity and Corporate Innovation: International Evidence
70 Pages Posted: 5 Nov 2018 Last revised: 12 Aug 2019
Date Written: August 10, 2019
Using a novel database of firm patents and board characteristics across 45 countries, we examine both within- and cross-country determinants of board gender diversity and its relation to corporate innovation. Boards are more likely to include women in countries with narrower gender gaps, higher female labor market participation, and less masculine cultures. Firms with gender diverse boards have more patents, more novel patents, and higher innovative efficiency. Further analyses suggest that gender diverse boards are associated with more failure-tolerant and long-term CEO incentives, more innovative corporate cultures, and more diverse inventors, characteristics that are conducive to better innovative performance.
Keywords: board gender diversity; corporate innovation; patent novelty; innovative efficiency; CEO incentives; corporate culture; inventor diversity
JEL Classification: G18; G31; G32
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