Will female board members increase the performance of the firm? The indirect relationship between board gender diversity and firm performance through CSR decoupling
This study states that board gender diversity will decrease the engagement of a firm in Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) decoupling. Furthermore, this study states that this decreased engagement in CSR decoupling will increase the performance of the firm. In addition to these direct effects, this study investigates the indirect relationship of board gender diversity on firm performance through CSR decoupling. Three hypotheses were conducted using relevant literature, and stakeholder, legitimacy and signalling theory. This study investigated these relationships using a sample of European firms that were included in the ASSET4 database during the years 2015-2019. Using structural equation modelling, the results show a negative association between board gender diversity and CSR decoupling. The results also show a negative association between CSR decoupling and Tobin’s Q, but no association between CSR decoupling and ROA. Finally, the results show a positive and significant indirect effect between board gender diversity and Tobin’s Q through CSR decoupling. Additionally, the study investigated lag effects and a separate regression of brownwashing. This study contributes to the literature by showing that board gender diversity will decrease CSR decoupling in the firm, and this decreased CSR decoupling will increase the performance of the firm.
Faculteit der Managementwetenschappen