Gender differences in firm’s leadership and risk preferences
León Castillo, Janina Virginia
Pontificia Universidad Católica del Perú
This thesis is composed of two studies related to gender issues in economics. The first one explores whether companies experience benefits when the firm’s CEO and owner are both women. It employs data from the 2009-2014 World Bank Enterprise Surveys (WBES) to measure firms’ performance through growth in sales and productivity. Potential endogeneity was corrected by using the UN Gender Development Index and the average fertility rate as they comply with the exclusion restrictions. The paper uses the Control Function method with a Probit first stage estimation and an OLS main equation. The findings suggest that a female owner strengthens the female CEO’s business skills and leads to better firm performance than when the CEO is a woman and the owner is a man. The second study analyzes if there are gender differences in the socioeconomic characteristics that impact the risk aversion of a person. Gender differences in risk aversion may explain the gaps between men and women in the professional or labor field. If this situation is to be modified, it is important to understand how actors behave when facing risky situations and which variables could influence this change. In this sense, the paper draws from laboratory experiments associated with risky and uncertain decisions, representative of six cities in Latin America, through two empirical strategies: regression analysis with interactions and Blinder-Oaxaca decomposition. We conclude that women are more risk averse than men, and that the main variables associated with this behavior are education, age, and whether or not the person is part of the labor market

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