Africapitalism, Corporate Governance and gender
Professor Emmanuel Adegbite, Professor of Accounting and Corporate Governance, Nottingham University Business School, Chair of EDI Advisory Board on Gender and Race Pay Equality.
One of Professor Adegbite’s areas of research expertise focuses on the impact of female directorship on ethical corporate governance disclosure practices on boards in the context of Nigeria. Despite the increasing significance of gender diversity and the need to increase ethical corporate governance disclosure practices globally, there exists a dearth of research examining the link between both subjects. Building on ethicality, risk averseness and diversity literatures, Professor Adegbite has examined whether and to what extent female directorships impact on ethical corporate governance disclosure practices in a highly patriarchal sub-Saharan African country, Nigeria. Working with hand collected data for 80 listed firms for the period 2011-2015 he has demonstrated that female directorship is positively and significantly associated with increase in ethical corporate governance disclosures. Moreover, this study establishes that even within patriarchal societies where women face negative preconceptions and stereotypes about their leadership roles and capabilities, firms with female directors disclose higher ethical corporate governance practices compared to firms without female directors. Professor Adegbite’s research on the positive impact of female directorship on improving ethical corporate governance disclosure practices provides the evidence-base that has the potential to influence corporate governance and wider policy regarding the employment of women in decision-making instances.
Professor Adegbite also provides thought leadership with policy impact through Africapitalism as a possible route to Africa’s sustainable development. Africapitalism proposes an approach to capitalism and a management philosophy which explores how the private sector can contribute to Africa’s development through ventures that create both economic and social positive outcomes. Its success lies in its capacity to address the challenges and weaknesses confronting corporations operating in Africa and in its novel approach to considering the inter-relationship between corporations in Africa and the society within which they operate. Professor Adegbite’s research explores how the cardinal values associated with Africapitalism can help in shaping good corporate governance practices and, in turn, how an Africapitalist corporate governance model could sustainably connect businesses to society within Africa. His proposals about the translation of Africapitalist solutions into actions which redress corporate governance weaknesses, either through the appointment of women and civil society representatives on boards, or the setting up of board ethics committees, bears important policy orientation at this key stage of rapid socio-economic transformation in African countries.