Ruthless Exploiters or Ethical Guardians of the Workforce? Powerful CEOs and their Impact on Workplace Safety and Health

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Haga , J , Huhtamäki , F & Sundvik , D 2021 , ' Ruthless Exploiters or Ethical Guardians of the Workforce? Powerful CEOs and their Impact on Workplace Safety and Health ' , Journal of Business Ethics . https://doi.org/10.1007/s10551-021-04740-4

Title: Ruthless Exploiters or Ethical Guardians of the Workforce? Powerful CEOs and their Impact on Workplace Safety and Health
Author: Haga, Jesper; Huhtamäki, Fredrik; Sundvik, Dennis
Contributor: Hanken School of Economics, Finance, Vaasa
Hanken School of Economics, Hanken School of Economics
Hanken School of Economics, Accounting, Vaasa
Belongs to series: Journal of Business Ethics
ISSN: 0167-4544
Abstract: The allocation of resources among different stakeholders is an ethical dilemma for chief executive officers (CEOs). In this study, we investigate the association between CEO power and workplace injuries and illnesses. We use an establishment-level dataset comprising 31,924 establishment-year observations between 2002 and 2011. Our main result shows that employees at firms with structurally powerful CEOs experience fewer workplace injuries and illnesses and days away from work. We reason that CEOs derive a private benefit from low injury and illness rates and that powerful CEOs are better at influencing employees to take workplace safety and health seriously. Additional analyses reveal fewer injuries and illnesses in firms led by CEOs with expertise power. However, increased injuries and illnesses were linked to firms controlled by CEOs with ownership power. Moreover, we find that structurally powerful CEOs mitigate injury and illness differences in relation to geographical proximity to corporate headquarters. We contribute with both research and practical implications on the topics of CEO power and corporate social responsibility (CSR) in general and workplace safety and health in particular.
Date: 2021-02-07
Subject: 512 Business and Management
CEO power
corporate social responsibility
real effects
workplace safety and health
KOTA2021?
PREM2021_03
2 - Hybrid open access publication channel
1 - Self archived
https://helda.helsinki.fi/dhanken/handle/10227/401783
0- Ingen av författarna har en utländsk affiliation
1- Publicerad utomlands
0- Ingen affiliation med ett företag
AoS: Financial management, accounting, and governance
Yes
SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being
Rights:


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