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Is there still a gender effect on CEO compensation?

Dorota Leszczynska (IDRAC Business School, Lyon, France)
Jean-Louis Chandon (Groupe INSEEC, Paris, France)

Journal of Management Development

ISSN: 0262-1711

Article publication date: 13 June 2019

Issue publication date: 14 June 2019




Do female CEOs face a compensation gap? The purpose of this paper is to examine whether gender affects the total compensation of today’s CEOs, and whether it moderates ten factors influencing their total compensation.


Taking the 54 female CEOs cited in the US 2014 Fortune’s 1000 report, a matched sample of male CEOs was selected, matched according to the crosstab of age by education and by the sizes of the companies directed by these female CEOs.


Using four years’ worth of Fortune reports, between 2013 and 2016, this matched sample indicates that female CEOs are not discriminated against in terms of total compensation. However, eight factors do show a significant effect on total compensation. Using moderation analysis, the present study reveals how gender interacts with company size, sector, membership of outside boards and nature of previous experience.

Research limitations/implications

This paper addresses an important and under-researched gap, with contradictory findings in the existing literature, by compiling and testing the characteristics of male and female CEOs which are not cited in Fortune 1000 reports.


Arguably, this is therefore one of the first papers to study gender differences in total compensation among Fortune 1000 CEOs using a matched sample technique, based on a larger number of female CEOs and a larger number of years than any previous research.



Leszczynska, D. and Chandon, J.-L. (2019), "Is there still a gender effect on CEO compensation?", Journal of Management Development, Vol. 38 No. 5, pp. 336-356.



Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2019, Emerald Publishing Limited

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