How Public Attention to Gender Equality Affects the Demand for Female Directors

Women are starkly underrepresented on corporate boards and more generally in leadership positions. Hillary Clinton’s U.S. presidential campaign and movements like #MeToo have recently attracted lots of attention to gender equality issues. As a result, biases, stereotypes, and female under-representation in leadership positions are widely debated.

In our recent working paper, we ask to what extent public attention to gender equality problems helps to reduce gender biases and stereotypes and to advance female representation in leadership positions. This is an important question because experiments in the psychology literature provide mixed evidence. On the one hand, some suggest that raising awareness … Read more

How Short-Term Institutional Ownership Helps Firms Adapt to Radical Change

Technological shocks, import competition, and shifts in regulatory policies lead with increasing frequency to major industry shakeouts and radical change in economic environments. Whether firms succumb or thrive depends on the extent to which they restructure and reinvent their business models. Therefore, it is crucial to understand which factors help spur prompt and successful restructuring of firms affected by permanent negative shocks and, at the macroeconomic level, of stagnating economies.

Our recent working paper aims to understand how a firm’s ownership structure affects its response to permanent negative shocks. Existing literature implies that in firms with short-horizon investors, management fears … Read more