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Female directors and the media: stereotypes of board members

Celia De Anca (Center for Diversity Management, IE Business School, Madrid, Spain)
Patricia Gabaldon (Department of Economic Environment, IE Business School, Madrid, Spain)

Gender in Management

ISSN: 1754-2413

Article publication date: 29 July 2014

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Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to analyze the research in this field on the portrayal of women and the effect this has on boards and corporate image, as well as to propose a theoretical framework for further research on the effects of media stereotypes. The theoretical model aims to analyze the media’s effect on female board members, and how this helps in the process of changing stereotypes or whether it consolidates existing preconceptions.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper reviews the existing literature on the subject and proposes a theoretical model for future research, contributing thus in opening a new line of research in the field of the roles of women on boards.

Findings

The conclusions reached will have important consequences for the future of women on boards in relation to three fundamental issues: the types of women that join boards of directors, the type of female profile companies search for and the roles women are expected to play on those boards.

Research limitations/implications

The theoretical framework developed encourages corporate governance agents, business leaders and institution to reflect on potential gender biases.

Practical implications

The theoretical framework developed encourages corporate governance agents, business leaders and institutions and media agents to reflect on potential gender biases.

Originality/value

An important body of literature already exists showing how the portrayal of women can reinforce or eliminate barriers to access membership of a board of directors. There is also a solid body of literature showing the media’s effect on transmitting or changing preconceived ideas about women in business, as well as the potential impact of appointing them – through the influence of different stakeholders – on a company’s image. However, there has been little substantial research carried out on the media’s effect on gender diversity on boards.

Keywords

Citation

De Anca, C. and Gabaldon, P. (2014), "Female directors and the media: stereotypes of board members", Gender in Management, Vol. 29 No. 6, pp. 334-351. https://doi.org/10.1108/GM-07-2013-0079

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2014, Emerald Group Publishing Limited