Pandemic Governance: Pawns, Potentates or Partners?

When: 15 Nov 2021, 14:15-15:30
Where: Zoom
Speaker: Renée B. Adams

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Meeting ID: 999 3632 1377


We document how boards responded to the Covid-19 pandemic using detailed data on in-person and virtual board meetings of NHS hospital trusts. We show that effective board independence increases at the same time as the CEO and Chair gain more voice in meetings. However, the rise in board independence is not associated with an increase in observable measures of oversight. Instead, boards appear to switch to a problem-solving mode that enables the executive team to focus on managing operational challenges. Our paper suggests that conventional narratives of boards underestimate the extent to which team members support each other when necessary.