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Appointments, pay and performance in UK boardrooms by gender

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    Rights statement: This is the peer reviewed version of the following article: Main, B, Gregory-Smith, I & O'Reilly, CA 2014, 'Appointments, pay and performance in UK boardrooms by gender' Economic Journal, vol 124, no. 574, pp. 109-128, which has been published in final form at 10.1111/ecoj.12102. This article may be used for non-commercial purposes in accordance with Wiley Terms and Conditions for Self-Archiving.

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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)109-128
Number of pages20
JournalEconomic Journal
Issue number574
Early online date29 Oct 2013
Publication statusPublished - 2014


This article uses UK data to examine issues regarding the scarcity of women in boardroom positions. The article examines appointments, pay and any associated productivity effects deriving from increased diversity. Evidence of gender-bias in the appointment of women as non-executive directors is found together with mixed evidence of discrimination in wages or fees paid. However, the article finds no support for the argument that gender diverse boards enhance corporate performance. Proposals in favour of greater board diversity may be best structured around the moral value of diversity, rather than with reference to an expectation of improved company performance.

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