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Silicon Valley Business Journal Details Findings of 2 Fenwick Surveys

December 12, 2014

​Fenwick & West's just-issued Corporate Governance Survey and Gender Diversity Survey have been given an in-depth write-up in the Silicon Valley Business Journal. In the article, Fenwick corporate partner David Bell, author of the first report and co-author of the second, was quoted regarding several of the surveys' key findings.

The Corporate Governance Survey compares how corporate governance has been handled among companies in the Standard & Poor's 100 (S&P 100) Index and the Silicon Valley 150 (SV 150) Index during the past 19 years. The Gender Diversity Survey examines women's participation in senior leadership positions in those groups during the same period.

The Silicon Valley Business Journal article focused on the gender analyses found in both surveys and highlighted, among other findings, the finding that SV 150 companies with women as CEOs do not have more women in other leadership positions than do companies that have male CEOs.

The survey data do not explain why this is true, Bell said, but anecdotal information from conversations with women leaders indicates that executives of both genders “do not want to be seen as making decisions based on gender.”

Bell acknowledged that the surveys’ gender diversity results can be hard to take and that “there is no magic flywheel effort that will make more women get [to the top leadership positions].”

However, Bell also expressed hope that tech companies will continue to develop and implement strategies to increase gender diversity, particularly given that more and more women are obtaining technical and advanced degrees that can help prepare them to take on high-level roles.

The full article is available through the Silicon Valley Business Journal website