Research study links the presence of women on directive boards to competition policies


A greater presence of women in directive boards in companies is related to a lower participation in cartels, agreements between companies to reduce competition and harm consumers. This is the main conclusion of an interuniversity research study funded by OCDE, which counts on the participation of Joan-Ramon Borrell, lecturer at the Faculty of Economics and Business of the UB. Joan-Ramon Borrell and funded by the OECD.

Researchers have analyzed more than a hundred companies. They have estimated that when a company ends up in a cartel situation, there is also an increase in the presence of women on the board of directors. Specifically, women go from representing 11% to 20%. “Our study has not yet been able to identify whether the cartel breaking occurs due to the incorporation of women on directive boards, or whether sanctioned companies for participating in illegal cartels are reshaping their boards by incorporating women? Borrell notes.

"Over the upcoming months we will focus on analyzing whether these changes occur on boards of directors before, during or after investigations and sanctions on companies", he continues. "What we do identify at the moment is that gender and competition policies are complementary, they help each other", he concludes.

Joan-Ramon Borrell has carried out the research study together with Carmen García Galindo and Juan Luis Jiménez, from the University of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, and José Manuel Ordóñez de Haro, from the University of Málaga. The researchers study was one of selected seven out of the 61 projects that had been submitted to an OECD call with the support of the Competition Bureau Canada.

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