Corporations

The largest companies in the U.S. – those with gross annual revenues of at least $20 billion – report a larger representation of women and other underrepresented groups on their boards of directors. Seventy percent have at least two women and 53 percent have two or more directors from underrepresented groups. Women managers, however, are increasingly opting out of high-end careers when companies fail to meet their professional needs and goals. Fewer than 15 percent of Fortune 500 officers and directors are women, and graduate business schools (unlike law and medical schools) have far fewer women than men applicants. NCRW is supporting efforts to make the corporate environment more welcoming and the career ladder more accessible to women and people of color.

Women in senior management: still not enough

 
The past 12 months have seen women take the lead in some of the toughest economic and political environments: Christine Lagarde became the first female to head the International Monetary Fund, Angela Merkel, the German Chancellor, has emerged as the key figure in solving the eurozone sovereign debt crisis and Maria das Gracas Foster has taken over at Petrobras, becoming the first woman to run one of the world’s top five oil companies. Women also head governments in countries such as Argentina, Australia, Brazil and Thailand.

However, the GrantThorton International Business Report 2012 survey shows that just 21% of senior management roles are held by women globally, figure which has barely moved over the past decade. Moreover, just 9% of businesses have a female CEO. This short report explores why this issue matters, the current state of play and what is being done about it.

URL: 
http://www.internationalbusinessreport.com/Reports/2012/women.asp

Return on Diversity: A Study of Diversity in the Boardroom 2012

 Women are bringing a much needed source of emotional intelligence to the top table and as a result improving a board's ability to innovate, make consensual decisions and connect with customers and staff. This is according to a survey by Inspire, the business network for senior board level women supported by Harvey Nash.

The survey, completed by 326 board-level executives across 19 countries and part of Inspire's Return on Diversity report, revealed that almost two-thirds of respondents (64%) believe women are bringing a greater level of emotional intelligence (EI) to the board which in turn brings greater cultural understanding (91% believed better EI boosted the board's ability in this area), better board consensus (80%) and greater creativity and innovation (75%).

(From the press release)

URL: 
http://media.harveynash.com/uk/mediacentre/inspire_survey.pdf

Panacea or Placebo: Are Women’s Networks Working for Women?

 

URL: 
http://www.simmons.edu/som/docs/insights_34_FINAL.pdf

Discussion Paper - Deutsche Bundesbank: Executive board composition and bank risk taking

 Little is known about how socioeconomic characteristics of executive teams affect corporate governance in banking. Exploiting a unique dataset, we show how age, gender, and education composition of executive teams affect risk taking of financial institutions. First, we establish that age, gender, and education jointly affect the variability of bank performance. Second, we use
difference-in-difference estimations that focus exclusively on mandatory executive retirements and find that younger executive teams increase risk taking, as do board changes that result in a higher proportion of female executives. In contrast, if board changes increase the representation of executives holding Ph.D. degrees, risk taking declines.

URL: 
http://www.bundesbank.de/download/volkswirtschaft/dkp/2012/201203dkp.pdf
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