Board Competency Explanations for Differentiation in a Harmonisation Environment

Claus Holm, Finn Scholer


Some companies decide to differentiate from others even though the regulatory establishments such as the European Union and IASB constantly strive to encourage comparability and the need for harmonisation of reporting behaviour and governance structures. Under the harmonization regime, decisions to differentiate become strategic in nature and are placed in the hands of the (supervisory) board. We examine the influence of the competency and background of supervisory board members on decisions to differentiate in reporting and governance structure. We use data from 100 listed Danish companies. We find that early IFRS implementation is related to board competency in the form of international experience, while corporate governance disclosure level is related to internationalisation, professional background in accounting/finance and gender diversity. We also find that differentiation through voluntary implementation of audit committees is related to international experience, while board decisions to abandon the Danish joint audit regime are unrelated to competency measures.

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Review of European Studies   ISSN 1918-7173 (Print)   ISSN 1918-7181 (Online)

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