Women in the boardroom and their impact on climate change related disclosure

Mohammed Hossain (Department of Accounting, Finance and Economics, Griffith Business School, Griffith University, Brisbane, Australia)
Omar Al Farooque (UNE Business School, University of New England, Armidale, Australia)
Mahmood Ahmed Momin (Department of Accounting, Auckland University of Technology, Auckland, New Zealand)
Obaid Almotairy (Department of Accounting, Sulaiman AlRajhi School of Business, Bukairyah, Saudi Arabia)

Social Responsibility Journal

ISSN: 1747-1117

Publication date: 2 October 2017

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to investigate the relationship between gender diversity and the Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP) score/index. Specifically, the study describes extant research on theoretical perspectives, and the impact of women on corporate boards (WOBs) on carbon emission issues in the global perspective.

Design/methodology/approach

This study uses the carbon disclosure scores of the CDP from 2011 to 2013 (inclusive). A total observation for the three-year periods is 1,175 companies. However, based on data availability for the model, the sample size totals 331 companies in 33 countries with firms in 12 geographical locations. The authors used a model which is estimated using the fixed-effects estimator.

Findings

The outcomes of the study reveal that there is a positive relationship between gender diversity (WOB) and carbon disclosure information. In addition to establishing a relationship between CDP score and other control variables, this study also found a relationship with Board size, asset size, energy consumption and Tobin’s Q, which is common in the existing literature.

Research limitations/implications

The limitations of the study mostly revolve around samples and the time period. To further test the generalizability and cross-sectional validity of the outcomes, it is suggested that the proposed framework be tested in more socially responsible firms.

Practical implications

There are increasing pressures for WOBs from diverse stakeholders, such as the European Commission, national governments, politicians, employer lobby groups, shareholders, Fortune and Financial Times Stock Exchange (FTSE) rankings and best places for women to work lists. The study offers insights to policy makers implementing gender quota legislation.

Originality/value

The study has important implications for putting into practice good corporate governance and, in particular, gender diversity. The outcomes of the analyses advocate that companies that included women directors and had a smaller board size may expect to achieve a higher level of carbon emission performance and to voluntarily disclose the level of carbon information assessment requested by the CDP.

Keywords

Citation

Hossain, M., Farooque, O.A., Momin, M.A. and Almotairy, O. (2017), "Women in the boardroom and their impact on climate change related disclosure", Social Responsibility Journal, Vol. 13 No. 4, pp. 828-855. https://doi.org/10.1108/SRJ-11-2016-0208

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Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2017, Emerald Publishing Limited

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