Sustainable Finance Distinguished Speakers Series: Professor Renée Adams

University House Room 103
Wednesday 15 January 2020 (14:00-16:00)

Distinguished Speaker: Professor Renée Adams (Saïd Business School)

Title: Lehman Sisters

About the speaker

Professor Renée Adams is a truly global scholar. Her work focuses on information flows on boards, bank governance, group decision-making, the governance of central banks and gender diversity on and off boards. Her global experience is reflected in the interdisciplinary nature of her research, which has been published in top accounting, economics, finance and management journals, such as American Economic Review, Journal of Finance, Review of Financial Studies, Management Science, Journal of Financial Economics, Journal of Accounting and Economics.

In 2019 Renée won the Female Career Award from HEC Lausanne.

Professor Renée Adams also sits on the editorial boards of many academic journals including Management Science, Journal of Financial Stability, Leadership Quarterly, European Financial Management, Journal of Empirical Finance, International Review of Finance, Corporate Governance International Review, International Review of Finance, Journal of Financial Services Research, and Annals of Corporate Governance.  


Would the crisis have happened if Lehman Brothers had been Lehman Sisters? Based on documented population gender differences in risk aversion, some argue not. But, population averages can mask important selection effects. We show that conditional on being in the finance industry, women need not be more risk averse than men. Consistent with the importance of selection, financial firms with more female directors do not have lower risk than non-financial firms. If anything, they are relatively riskier. While diversity may be valuable in a crisis, understanding the role of selection may be critical for identifying the reasons why.