Boardroom Diversity and its Effect on Social Performance: Conceptualization and Empirical Evidence
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- Hafsi, T. & Turgut, G. J Bus Ethics (2013) 112: 463. doi:10.1007/s10551-012-1272-z
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In this paper, we seek to answer two questions: (1) what does boardroom diversity stand for in the strategic management literature? And, (2) is there a significant relationship between boardroom diversity and corporate social performance. We first clarify the boardroom diversity concept, distinguishing between a structural diversity of boards and a demographic diversity in boards, and then we investigate its possible linkage to social performance in a sample of S&P500 firms. We find a significant relationship between diversity in boards and social performance. This relationship is moderated by diversity of boards. Our results also reveal the effects of the specific variables that make up the diversity of boards and diversity in boards constructs. In particular, gender, and age have a significant effect on corporate social performance. Some important measurement issues are raised and discussed.