Girls, Who Run The World? Not Yet: An Analysis of the Underrepresentation of Women on Boards in Canada and the Underlying Theory of the Regulation Thereof
Nicholls, Diana Christine
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This thesis provides an in-depth analysis of the underlying theories of the regulation of the underrepresentation of women on boards, typically categorized into business case and normative rationales. An analysis of these theories and their pitfalls reveals that it is time to amend the Canadian diversity policy, which may mean acceptance by the regulators of one, both or neither of these rationales. Through an analysis of the regulatory journey of the Canadian policy contained in NI 58-101F1, it is argued that while regulators claim the policy was rooted in business case rationales, it in fact arose from normative concerns. The policys weakness has not allowed it to achieve its stated objective which is to increase gender diversity on reporting issuer boards. A range of regulatory options more likely to enhance womens participation on boards are presented. What exact form regulation should take is left up to the securities regulators.