The Glass Pyramid: Informal Gender Status Hierarchy on Boards

Markóczy, L., Sun, S.L., Zhu, J., 2021. The glass pyramid: Informal gender status hierarchy on boards. Journal of Business Ethics 168 (4), 827-845.

20 Pages Posted: 10 Jul 2019 Last revised: 22 Oct 2021

See all articles by Lívia Markóczy

Lívia Markóczy

University of Texas at Dallas - Naveen Jindal School of Management

Sunny Li Sun

Jigao Zhu

University of International Business and Economics

Date Written: July 7, 2019

Abstract

Drawing on the status characteristic theory, we investigate the effect of gender on board directors’ status ranking and find that all else being equal, female directors’ status ranking is 81.48% of one position lower than that of male directors, a discrepancy that is attributable to gender. We theorize on the mechanism that determines the ways in which the status value of gender on a board affects board interactions and predict how this mechanism influences firm outcomes, including excessive managerial spending, social responsibility performance, and firm risk. We test our hypotheses in Chinese firms using an unbalanced panel that includes 5,396 firm-year observations (86,019 director-year observations) for a period of six years and find them supported.

Keywords: Women on boards, gender category-based status beliefs, informal status structure of boards, firm outcomes

JEL Classification: G30

Suggested Citation

Markóczy, Lívia and Sun, Sunny Li and Zhu, Jigao, The Glass Pyramid: Informal Gender Status Hierarchy on Boards (July 7, 2019). Markóczy, L., Sun, S.L., Zhu, J., 2021. The glass pyramid: Informal gender status hierarchy on boards. Journal of Business Ethics 168 (4), 827-845. , Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3416139

Lívia Markóczy

University of Texas at Dallas - Naveen Jindal School of Management ( email )

P.O. Box 830688
Richardson, TX 75083-0688
United States

Jigao Zhu (Contact Author)

University of International Business and Economics ( email )

Room 412, Ningyuan Building
Huixindong street 10
Beijing, 100029
China

No contact information is available for Sunny Li Sun

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