Gender diversity and family firm governance: Towards a research agenda

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Conference Paper

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Citation only.

Barrett, M., & Moores, K. (2011). Gender diversity and family firm governance: Towards a research agenda. Paper presented at the Family Business Australia (FBA): Family business research & education symposium, Perth, Australia.

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2011 HERDC submission. FoR code: 150303

© Copyright Mary Barrett & Ken Moores, 2011


Diversity has recently become an important topic in the context of corporate governance, particularly in view of the low percentage of women represented on company boards. While evidence is emerging suggesting that gender diversity on boards is associated with increased organizational financial performance, it is not clear that this is a causal link. We outline various theoretical lenses relevant to the area of corporate governance to distil recurring themes pertinent to potential predictors of women’s board membership in privately-held firms. We summarize as research propositions the special characteristics and circumstances of family controlled businesses (FCBs) and how their governance models are likely to affect female board membership, especially in terms of whether they make the board more conducive to female participation than in more widely held corporations.

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