Does Board Diversity Impact Corporate Performance?

Posted on September 16, 2020

Today we are very happy to announce the winners of the DDJ Capital Management White Paper Challenge. In this contest, college students were tasked with submitting a paper discussing the topic: “Does Board Diversity Impact Corporate Performance?” Of all the contestants, we have selected the following two winners.

Saamia Bukhari, a junior at Boston College, Carroll School of Management, is the first-place winner. In her paper, The Power of Board Diversity, Saamia Bukhari presents key thoughts and arguments as to why diversity can empower a company’s board of directors, as long as such diversity is achieved successfully under the conditions of inclusivity and sincerity. Citing powerful research from various studies, the writer presents empirical evidence that diversity can positively affect a company’s bottom-line, as well as drive innovation from within. Saamia concludes with the notion that, “board diversity is powerful as long as the structures and culture around give it the room to be.”

Zac Ibrahim, an incoming freshman at Cornell University, won second place. In his paper, Corporate Diversity and Representation: A Bridge Between the Boardroom and Today’s Society, Zac Ibrahim begins by detailing the current racial and gender disparity on boards of directors, pointing to numerous facts and figures. He asserts that greater diversity on a board of directors equates to higher profitability and greater performance. Zac goes on to cite the real-world example of Nike and Colin Kaepernick, and details how not only having a diverse board of directors, but also embracing social responsibility on a company-wide basis has positive impacts that extend far beyond brand reputation and public image.

We are proud of how these writers explored the issues of diversity as they relate to corporate operations and success. At DDJ, we will strive to continue to provide additional opportunities and further support to college students, as they are the future of our industry.

In the coming weeks, we plan to publish both of these papers in full to our blog library.  If you would like to be informed of when they post, please sign up here to subscribe to our insights. 

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DDJ Capital Management is a privately held investment manager for institutional clients that specializes in investments within the leveraged credit markets. Since our inception in 1996, DDJ has sought to generate attractive risk-adjusted returns for our clients by adhering to a value-oriented, bottom-up, fundamental investment philosophy.  DDJ has extensive experience investing in securities issued by non-investment grade companies within the lower tier of the credit markets, including high yield bonds, bank loans and other special situation investments.

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