The CSR Newsletters are a freely-available resource generated as a dynamic complement to the textbook, Strategic Corporate Social Responsibility: Sustainable Value Creation.

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Friday, September 18, 2015

Strategic CSR - Female CEOs

The article in the url below highlights the disproportionate attention placed by activist investors on S&P 500 firms that are run by women:
"Only 23 women lead companies in the Standard & Poor's 500-stock index. Yet at least a quarter of them have fallen into the cross hairs of activist investors."
The article suggests this pattern of behavior may arise for a couple of reasons:
"Are companies led by women truly more likely to be poor performers in need of change? Or do activist investors — all of them men — see women as softer targets?"
Another possibility, however, is that the boards of companies in financial distress are more likely to appoint female CEOs, which then increases the chances the organization will be targeted for under-performance. This phenomenon would also help explain another interesting statistic quoted in the article:
"It is also true that more women are fired from top positions than men. A 2013 study conducted by a unit of PricewaterhouseCoopers found that 'among C.E.O.s leaving once over the past 10 years, a higher share of women have been forced out than men (38 percent of women vs. 27 percent of men).'"
Have a good weekend.
David Chandler & Bill Werther
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The Women of the S&P 500 and Investor Activism
By Andrew Ross Sorkin
February 10, 2015
The New York Times
Late Edition – Final