DP14513 Politics and Gender in the Executive Suite

Author(s): Alma Cohen, Moshe Hazan, David Weiss
Publication Date: March 2020
Date Revised: November 2020
Keyword(s): CEO Politics, Executive Suite, Gender diversity
JEL(s): G30, J16, J30, J33, J71, K00, M12, M14, M51, M52
Programme Areas: Labour Economics, Public Economics, Financial Economics, Macroeconomics and Growth
Link to this Page: cepr.org/active/publications/discussion_papers/dp.php?dpno=14513

This study investigates whether CEOs' political preferences are associated with the representation and compensation of women among non-CEO top executives at U.S. public companies. We find that CEOs who more strongly identify with the Republican party are associated with fewer women in the executive suite. To explore causality, we use an event study approach to show that replacing a Republican with a Democratic CEO increases female representation in the executive suite. Finally, gender gaps in the level and performance-sensitivity of compensation are larger under Republican CEOs. Our results are consistent with no such gaps existing in companies run by Democratic CEOs.