The Human Experience of Being-in-the-Board: A Phenomenological Approach

13 Pages Posted: 1 Feb 2019

See all articles by Jaap W. Winter

Jaap W. Winter

Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam; University of Amsterdam; Insead

Date Written: November 3, 2018


Corporate Governance research so far practically ignores the human experience of being-in-the-board as a source of understanding board practices, board performance and its strengths and weaknesses. This article takes a phenomenological approach to describe key, structural features of boards that inform members of the board on how to behave. Board members make sense of the complexity of these features in different ways, determined by their personal characters, drives, values, virtues, experiences and world views. Boards would benefit hugely from developing a reflective practice of uncovering, sharing and discussing their mutual experiences of being-in-the-board. Academically, becoming aware of the crucial role of human experience of being-in-the-board for the performance of the board should lead to very different types of research.

Keywords: corporate governance, board performance, phenomenology, human experience

JEL Classification: K22, L22

Suggested Citation

Winter, Jaap W. and Winter, Jaap W., The Human Experience of Being-in-the-Board: A Phenomenological Approach (November 3, 2018). Available at SSRN: or

Jaap W. Winter (Contact Author)

Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam ( email )

De Boelelaan 1105
+31653978419 (Phone)

University of Amsterdam ( email )

Oude Manhuispoort

Insead ( email )

Boulevard de Constance
77305 Fontainebleau Cedex

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