Encyclopedia of Sustainable Management

Living Edition
| Editors: Samuel Idowu, René Schmidpeter, Nicholas Capaldi, Liangrong Zu, Mara Del Baldo, Rute Abreu

Theoretical Paradigms of the Board of Directors

Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-02006-4_485-1



There are several theories that can contribute to knowledge about the most important governance body of the firm – the board of directors. However, the emergence of alternative theories, opposed in some points, has contributed even more to the broad debate on corporate governance (Garner et al. 2017). The three dominant theoretical paradigms in research on corporate governance are (Nicholson and Kiel 2007): the Agency Theory (Jensen and Meckling 1976; Fama and Jensen 1983), the Stewardship Theory (Donaldson 1990; Donaldson and Davis 1991, 1994), and the Resources and Capabilities Theory (Zald 1969; Pfeffer 1972; Pfeffer and Salancik 1978). These three theories recognize the different main roles of the board of directors, in such a way that the optimal configuration of the board differs depending on the theoretical approach adopted. However, a common aspect of all of them is their emphasis on clarifying the relationship between...

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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Business AdministrationUniversity of CantabriaSantanderSpain

Section editors and affiliations

  • Dirk Reiser

There are no affiliations available