King’s College PhD Research
Getting on Board: Comparing Men and Women’s Experience of the Board Appointment Process
Sapphire Partners collaborated and part-sponsored a PhD project conducted at the Department of Management at King’s College London. Getting on Board was a research project conducted by Scarlett Brown, a PhD student at the Department of Management, King's College London and supervised by Dr Elisabeth Kelan.
The project was a multi-year initiative and sought to provide the first academic in-depth investigation into the similarities and differences in the ways that men and women are appointed as non-executive directors to PLC boards. The researcher conducted interviews with a group of high potential board candidates three times over an 18-month period. This followed candidates through their searches and appointment processes; examining their search mechanisms, their critical relationships and networks, and how their perception of the ‘ideal board member’ was constructed and lived out. By understanding their individual experiences and how they made sense of the process, this research contributed to the growing literature on the professionalisation of the board appointment process and women on boards, with a unique angle and method of analysis.
Sapphire Partners played a key consultancy role in this research, by using their practical knowledge and insight on board appointments to assist the researcher in making sense of the findings. We also helped and advised the researcher in gaining access to relevant participants.
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