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Nationality and Gender Diversity on Swiss Corporate Boards

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abstract For a sample of 210 Swiss publicly listed firms we analyse the characteristics of all 1678 directors in the year 2003 in order to investigate how board members' nationality and gender interact with directors' level of independence, number of other directorships and demographic characteristics. Our results suggest that whereas foreign directors tend to be more independent, women directors are more likely to be affiliated to firm management through family ties and that foreign directors hold significantly lower numbers of directorships at other Swiss boards. Female and foreign directors also differ in terms of educational background, educational level, age and board tenure. Some of our gender diversity findings are different from previous research. We conclude that in order to manage diversity on corporate boards it is imperative to understand the characteristics, qualifications and affiliations that these directors bring to the boardroom and that it is important to take national circumstances into account rather than relying on research results from other countries.
   
type journal paper
   
keywords Nationality Diversity, Gender Diversity, Corporate Boards
   
language English
kind of paper journal article
date of appearance 8-7-2007
journal Corporate Governance: An International Review
publisher Blackwell (Oxford)
ISSN 0964-8410
ISSN (online) 1467-8683
DOI 10.1111/j.1467-8683.2007.00587.x
volume of journal 15
number of issue 4
page(s) 546-557
review double-blind review
   
citation Ruigrok, W., Peck, S., & Tacheva, S. (2007). Nationality and Gender Diversity on Swiss Corporate Boards. Corporate Governance: An International Review, 15(4), 546-557, DOI:10.1111/j.1467-8683.2007.00587.x.