Research and Articles We Like

Gender and Board Activeness: The Role of a Critical Mass

By Miriam Schwartz-Ziv 

July 14, 2015


This study analyzes detailed minutes of board meetings of business companies in which the Israeli government holds a substantial equity interest. Boards with at least three directors of each gender are found to be at least 79% more active at board meetings than those without such representation. This phenomenon is driven by women directors in particular; they are more active when a critical mass of at least three women is in attendance. Gender-balanced boards are also more likely to replace underperforming CEOs and are particularly active during periods when CEOs are being replaced.

Women Directors Change How Boards Work

By Laura Liswood

February 17, 2015

We know that getting more women on teams can boost performance. The examples are numerous: Citing private internal research of 20,000 client teams, EY’s vice chair Beth Brooke has said that the more diverse teams had higher profitability and great client satisfaction than non-diverse teams. And professors Anita Woolley and Thomas W. Malone have learned that increasing the number of women on a team also increases its collective intelligence.

Want Better Governance? Put Women on the Board

Alexandra Wrage

September 12, 2014

Gender-balanced boards perform better. Shareholders like them. Consumers reward them. They are better governed and less susceptible to fraud.


I am not arguing that one gender makes better decisions than the other, but rather that boards are more likely to make bad choices when members grow too comfortable with each other and when they lack the benefit of different perspectives. Homogenous boards become “clubbish,” and then the tendency feeds on itself as such boards over-emphasize the importance of “personality fit” when looking for new members. This would happen as readily with all-female boards as with all-male boards.

Boards With Women On Them Are More Aggressive, And Their Companies Perform Better

By Matthew Yglesias

January 3, 2013

I’ve written a few times about the gender composition of corporate boards, not the most important manifestation of entrenched sexist practices in the business world but the most blatantly obvious one since it would be totally trivial for a firm that actually cared about gender equity to have an equitable board.

Why Women Should Lead Boldly

Sharon Hadary and Laura Henderson

December 2, 2013

For many years, we’ve known intuitively that having women in top leadership positions means superior organizational performance. Today, a body of data from prestigious research organizations documents the positive impact women leaders have on their organizations.


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