We provide the first comprehensive analysis of directors’ shareholderism: their stances towards shareholders and stakeholders. In a sample of more than 900 directors originating from 55 countries and serving in 23 countries, we document that directors’ shareholderism varies according to their individual values, their cultural heritage and their status as expatriate directors. Shareholderism does not appear to depend on the distinction between common and civil law. IV-regressions that address the endogeneity of directors’ expatriate status suggest that expatriates do not always conform to local attitudes. Our results highlight the potential importance of director nominations in shaping board attitudes and may be useful for assessing the efficacy of legal measures addressing corporate purpose such as the Pacte Law in France and the EU’s proposed approach to corporate sustainability. Current approaches to ensuring corporations do the “right” thing may be too narrowly focused.
Contact Emails: