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Experience-based human capital or fixed paradigm problem? CEO tenure, contextual influences, and corporate social (ir)responsibility


  • Oh, Won-Yong
  • Chang, Young Kyun
  • Jung, Rami


There are both benefits and costs of CEO tenure. CEO tenure is an indication of firm-specific knowledge and experience (i.e., the human capital view); however, long CEO tenure may lead to a lack of flexibility (i.e., the fixed paradigm view). We examine the effect of CEO tenure on two of a firm's social outcomes-CSR and CSIR. If the human capital view holds, long CEO tenure will increase CSR and reduce CSIR. If the fixed paradigm view holds, long CEO tenure will reduce CSR and increase CSIR. We further propose that these relationships are amplified by contextual influences, such as market growth, resource availability, and CEO duality. Empirically, we found general support for the human capital hypothesis, such that extended CEO tenure itself does not increase CSR, but decrease CSIR. Furthermore, three contextual factors moderate the CEO tenure-CSIR relationship, yet only market growth moderates the CEO tenure-CSR relationship.

Suggested Citation

  • Oh, Won-Yong & Chang, Young Kyun & Jung, Rami, 2018. "Experience-based human capital or fixed paradigm problem? CEO tenure, contextual influences, and corporate social (ir)responsibility," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 90(C), pages 325-333.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jbrese:v:90:y:2018:i:c:p:325-333
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jbusres.2018.05.034

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Danny Miller, 1991. "Stale in the Saddle: CEO Tenure and the Match Between Organization and Environment," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 37(1), pages 34-52, January.
    2. Hausman, Jerry A & Taylor, William E, 1981. "Panel Data and Unobservable Individual Effects," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 49(6), pages 1377-1398, November.
    3. Schrand, Catherine M. & Zechman, Sarah L.C., 2012. "Executive overconfidence and the slippery slope to financial misreporting," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 53(1), pages 311-329.
    4. Won-Yong Oh & Young Kyun Chang & Zheng Cheng, 2016. "When CEO Career Horizon Problems Matter for Corporate Social Responsibility: The Moderating Roles of Industry-Level Discretion and Blockholder Ownership," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 133(2), pages 279-291, January.
    5. Yi Tang & Cuili Qian & Guoli Chen & Rui Shen, 2015. "How CEO hubris affects corporate social (ir)responsibility," Strategic Management Journal, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 36(9), pages 1338-1357, September.
    6. Mikko Manner, 2010. "The Impact of CEO Characteristics on Corporate Social Performance," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 93(1), pages 53-72, June.
    7. Jingoo Kang, 2016. "Labor market evaluation versus legacy conservation: What factors determine retiring CEOs' decisions about long-term investment?," Strategic Management Journal, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 37(2), pages 389-405, February.
    8. Gary S. Becker, 1975. "Human Capital: A Theoretical and Empirical Analysis, with Special Reference to Education, Second Edition," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number beck75-1, October.
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