Research Finds CEOs More Engaged with CSR If They Have a Daughter


A recent research report titled ‘Shaped By Their Daughters: Executives, Female Socialization, and Corporate Social Responsibility‘, suggests that female children make a difference within the American corporate sphere.

Indeed, some of America’s largest corporations spend an additional $59.5M per year on corporate social responsibility (CSR), and the researchers claim that this is because they are run by CEOs with daughters. It appears that whenever a business leader has a daughter, the company is “much nicer” to employees. While this study is said to be the first that closely examines the behaviour of CEOs of large American corps, prior research has shown that judges with daughters vote more liberally, and that members of congress with daughters tend to be more left-wing, and particularly support issues concerning reproductive rights.

More specifically, this study examined at the decisions made by almost 400 CEOs (3.7% of which were  women) who have almost 1,000 children in total. The study discovered that having a female child impacts the ways that CEOs manage their companies, and that the effect is amplified if the daughter is the CEO’s first-born. Hiring a new CEO with a daughter is said to lead to increased CSR-related activity. Moreover, companies with good CSR track records are more likely to hire new CEOs with daughters. According to the study, CEOs with daughters typically show a stronger attachment to society in general, as well as increased empathy for the well-being of stakeholders, spending approximately 13.4% of the firm’s net income on CSR-related matters. It also discovered that male CEOs with female children are almost 33% more likely to make CSR-related decisions similar to those made by female CEOs.

The researchers noted that CEOs with sons do not exhibit the same tendencies at work as those with daughters. They also saw that firms that go from having a CEO with a daughter to one that doesn’t are subject to noticeable negative changes in these types of CSR-related activities.

I would personally need to witness more studies drawn from a larger subset that exhibit the same findings, before concluding that this study is completely accurate. However, it is particularly interesting in its apparent demonstration of how children may very well be able to influence decisions made by high-ranking American executives.

via Sangeeta Haindl, Justmeans


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Rebecca Loeb

Rebecca is a graduate in English Literature, with both a B.A. and M.A. in the subject. She enjoys writing on issues in modern culture, particularly about controversial political situations and artistic endeavours in emerging market countries.

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