International Research and Practice
New Horizons in Management series
Edited by Susan Vinnicombe, Val Singh, Ronald J. Burke, Diana Bilimoria and Morten Huse
Chapter 9: Women on Corporate Boards of Directors in Spanish Listed Companies
Celia de Anca INTRODUCTION Given that in these communities women are not prepared for any kind of human virtue, they are often like plants in that they constitute a burden for men, which is one of the reasons for poverty in these societies. . . . At the same time women’s lack of training means they cannot contribute to any other necessary activities bar a few exceptions such as spinning and weaving, which are usually undertaken only when money is needed in order to subsist. (Averroes, 1986, p. 59) As early as the twelfth century in the Spanish city of Cordoba, the philosopher Averroes1 argued for a full inclusion of women in the economic fabric to aid the advancement of society. He and many others after him contributed to the transcendental improvements with regard to women’s inclusion in economic environments that make modern Spain a fair and equal society. However, despite these improvements, women’s economic integration in the twenty-ﬁrst century remains a topic of discussion in terms of the ratio of women to men in the higher echelons of business, which is still seriously imbalanced. In recent years a number of initiatives promoted by the public and private sectors have been launched to counteract this imbalance, most of which centre on removing external barriers to the promotion of women. Meanwhile, however, major internal hurdles continue to make women’s advancement diﬃcult and can only be resolved by a change in culture and perspective. CORPORATE GOVERNANCE IN SPAIN One hundred and ninety six...
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