Professor Amon Chizema and women on corporate boards

Professor Amon Chizema and women on corporate boards

Wed, 13 Jul 2016 09:34:00 BST

The number of women on corporate boards is still low and whilst some countries are achieving a higher proportion of women board members, others have not registered even a single one. This aspect of the gender gap took centre stage when Amon Chizema, Professor of Strategy and Corporate Governance at the University of Birmingham, presented the key points from his research on what might facilitate – or hinder – the appointment of female directors on boards. Using data from around the world, and with reference to his six-year old daughter, Professor Chizema argued that key social institutions have the potential to alleviate such stereotypical attitudes or to maintain the status quo. In short the representation of women in other key national institutions, such as in politics, positively affects the appointment of women to boards whereas religiosity (which might also reflect cultural factors) has a negative causal effect on female board appointments. Professor Chizema also highlighted the usefulness of looking outside one’s own discipline for theoretical support. In this study he used social role theory which illuminates traditional gender activities.

The full paper has been published in 2015 in the journal Leadership Quarterly (Vol 26, No.6)

This was the last seminar in the 2015/16 series and as usual was a vibrant forum for the consideration of this aspect of the gender gap. ‘The audience was excellent,’ remarked Professor Chizema. 

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