Family and State Ownership, Internationalization and Corporate Board-Gender Diversity: Evidence from China and India

  • Citation: Saeed, Abubakr, Amna Yousaf, and Jaithen Alharbi. “Family and State Ownership, Internationalization and Corporate Board-Gender Diversity: Evidence from China and India.” Cross Cultural and Strategic Management 24, no. 2 (2017).
    • Topics:
    • Business and Trade
    • Keywords:
    • East Asia
    • South Asia
    • China
    • India
    • internalization
    • gender diversity
    • equality
    • family-owned firms

In times of vivid debates on the inclusion of women on boards, the purpose of this paper is to shed a new light on the composition of boardrooms in emerging market firms by investigating how family and state ownership affect board-gender diversity in the emerging economies. This study uses Tobit regression to examine the effect of firm ownership on board-gender diversity. A panel data set of Chinese and Indian firms for the period 2004-2013 is used to conduct this study. The results show a negative and significant impact of family and state ownership on the proportion of women directors. However, this relationship is seen to be reverse if the firm is operating in international markets. Notably, a negative relationship was seen to persist between ownership structure and board-gender diversity for both female executive and independent board members, whereas a positive impact of internationalization was observed only for independent female directors. This research addresses the board-gender diversity issue in emerging economies by focusing on firm characteristics which are unique to their business context. Further, this study identifies the conditions under which emerging market firms assimilate or proscribe women on their boards by recognizing the salient features of firms from emerging markets. Hence, in doing so, new evidence is added to the studies on the determinants of board-gender diversity. Lastly, it advances the earlier literature based on resource dependency and agency views and demonstrates the importance of internationalization for the inclusion of women on corporate boards.

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