Graduation Year


Document Type




Degree Granting Department


Major Professor

Jianping Qi


board compositions, board of directors, CEO monitoring, CEO selection, corporate governance, shareholder wealth


This dissertation includes two related chapters that investigate corporate governance. In the first chapter, we examine the effectiveness of board monitoring on CEOs. It is widely believed that outsider boards are better monitors. In fact, regulations now require that the board of directors of publicly traded firms be composed of a majority of independent directors (or outsiders). However, this paper documents that an insider-dominated board can monitor the CEO just as well as an outsider board can when the firm's CEO is hired from outside. The results suggest that what matters is not so much as the structure of the board, but the "independence" between the board and the CEO it monitors. Specifically, we find that insider boards monitor more of their firms' CEOs if the CEO is hired from outside than from within. In addition, outsider boards monitor both inside and outside CEOs the same way. We also find little difference between insider and outsider boards when they monitor outside CEOs. The main contribution of this paper is to show that an insider board can be an effective monitor as long as it is independent of the CEO. In other words, what is important is board independence, not board structure per se.

In chapter two, we examine the relation between the change in a firm's value and its CEO selection sources: internal promotion versus external hire in both high and low product competition environments. Our results show that firms will be better off hiring an outside CEO (external hire) when the firms operate in a low product competition industry. Specifically, the evidence shows that hiring an outside CEO for a firm in a low product competition industry will increase the firm's value by about 3% for the entire tenure of the CEO. The main contribution of this paper is to show that product market competition is an important factor in CEO selection.