Date of Award

Spring 5-3-2024

Degree Type

Closed Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Business Administration (DBA)



First Advisor

Dr. Subhashish Samaddar

Second Advisor

Dr. Edward W. Miles

Third Advisor

Dr. Satish Nargundkar


As society increasingly values and celebrates diversity across various dimensions—from ethnicity and gender to expertise and experience—organizations are beginning to reassess their leadership structures and to confront the imperative of inclusivity at the executive level. This imperative is not merely an ethical or moral prerogative, but also a strategic necessity, underpinned by a growing body of empirical evidence linking diverse leadership to enhanced business outcomes. So, while companies have long recognized the importance of having a diverse workforce, the spotlight is now shifting to the highest organizational levels. The C-Suite, comprising an organization’s highest-ranking executives, wields significant influence over strategic decision-making, corporate culture, and the overall direction of a firm. It is in this crucible of leadership that the dynamics of diversity and inclusion have the potential to manifest with powerful—and distinctive—resonance.

Against this backdrop, this quantitative study examines the relationship between C-Suite diversity and business success, using Upper Echelon Theory and Resource-Based View Theory as the theoretical foundation. The study's results show a positive relationship between firm performance and some types of diversity in the C-Suite; they also suggest powerful ways forward for practitioners and future researchers in this pivotal area.


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Available for download on Friday, November 01, 2024