Corporate boards with women are more innovative on climate
Having at least 30% women on corporate boards "makes a key difference to climate governance and innovation," per new analysis of thousands of companies from the research firm BloombergNEF.
Why it matters: Companies worldwide are coming under increased pressure to curb emissions, adopt cleaner tech and disclose emissions data.
The big picture: The analysis of nearly 12,000 companies shows the strongest correlation between gender diversity and governance, notably disclosures.
- There's a "somewhat positive" link on performance, such as investments in renewable power and efficiency.
- However, "higher emitting sectors such as oil and gas companies, show limited correlation between emission reduction and board diversity."
- On the innovation front, firms with gender-diverse boards produce more and better patents.
By the numbers: A snapshot of 2,800 companies' emissions growth between 2016–2018 shows that companies with over 30% female boards averaged 0.6% emissions growth, compared to 3.5% for companies with no women in the boardroom.
How it works: Top-level findings on the oil sector in the broader report, which was conducted in collaboration with the Sasakawa Peace Foundation, include...
- "Leading integrated oil companies that have decarbonization strategies and are invested in digitalization activities also have higher female representation on the board."
- "Gender diversity, however, does not directly contribute to lowering emissions and expanding digitalization."
Yes, but: The number of companies of all sorts worldwide that have gender-diverse boards is growing, although women are still very underrepresented.
- "The number of companies with more than 30% women on the board of directors has increased eightfold in just over a decade, from 2% in 2009 to 16% today," the report finds.