A Seat at the Table : The Norwegian Board Gender Quota: A Study on Indirect Effects
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- Master Thesis 
Twenty years ago, Norway led the way with the first board gender quota on ASA1 and is now considering extending the legislation to AS. This paper examines if the existing board gender quota has fulfilled one of its main objectives – increasing opportunities for all women, also those outside the boardroom. First, we find little to no evidence of an external spillover onto AS boards, as the quota had a negligible impact on increasing the gender ratio for AS. Second, we find some evidence of internal spillover from the quota onto management, causing a slight short-term boost of increased female representation in management, but with modest longterm effects. However, comparing with Sweden, neither of these findings are likely to be significant due to a probable underlying societal trend. Third, we fail to find a general internal spillover effect from boards to management or vice versa. An AS quota will undoubtingly increase the number of female seats in the boardroom. Hence, if the main objective of the quota is to increase the female share of AS boards, we recommend that the policymakers implement a quota for AS companies. However, based on our findings, we urge them not to use increased labour opportunities for women as a motivation for enacting such a quota.