press release
Published: 05 April 2023

Hiring more women is good for business and communities, study of UAE firms finds

Gender-diverse senior management teams help boost responsible and collaborative innovation, according to a study from the University of Surrey.  

Focusing on small and medium-sized firms from emerging markets (ESMEs), researchers found that gender-diverse senior management teams are more likely to deliver value and innovation that contribute towards the United Nation’s Grand Challenges. The research team analysed 228 survey responses from ESMEs from the United Arab Emirates.  

Professor Taz Rajwani, co-author of the study and Head of the Department of Strategy and International Business at the University of Surrey, said: 

“We found that firms that valued gender diversity by employing women in some of their most senior roles were more able to respond to the ever-changing economic environment and made valuable contributions to the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals. This is yet more evidence that having women as part of a company’s senior management team is not only morally the right thing to do, but it is good for business and wider communities.” 

‘Grand Challenges’ focus on the ways in which cross-disciplinary research can address the objectives laid out in the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The Grand Challenges strands include Global Health, Sustainable Cities, Cultural Understanding, Human Wellbeing, Transformative Technology and Justice and Equality. 


Read the full study in the Journal of Product Innovation Management.   


Note to editors:     

  • Professor Tazeeb Rajwani is available for interview upon request     
  • Contact the University of Surrey press office:   
  • The University of Surrey is a research-intensive university, producing world-leading research that transforms lives and changes the world for the better. Sustainability is an institution-wide area of focus, delivering multi-disciplinary research to tackle the many challenges of climate change. The University is also committed to improving its own resource efficiency on its estate and being a sector leader. It has set a commitment to be carbon neutral by 2030. A focus on research that makes a difference to the world has contributed to Surrey being ranked 55th in the world in the Times Higher Education (THE) University Impact Rankings 2022, which assesses more than 1,400 universities' performance against the United Nations' Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). 

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