I confess to having a soft spot for the IEA, and not only because it was Margaret Thatcher’s favourite economic think tank before, and during, her three terms as prime minister.
In the summer of 2012, some months before J4MB was launched, I was leading Campaign for Merit in Business, the only organization in the world at the time (as now) campaigning against a government’s initiative to force major companies – through gender quotas, or the threat of them, as in the UK – to increase the proportion of women on their boards.
In the summer of 2012 I gave a well-received lecture at the IEA on why companies shouldn’t actively seek to increase female representation on their boards. For one thing, it’s anti-meritocratic, and for another, evidence was already accumulating – from numerous longitudinal studies – of a causal link between increasing female representation on boards, and corporate financial decline. The short C4MB briefing paper on the matter is here.