While doing a little reading for a paper I want to do on corruption and infrastructure, I found an interesting result in this paper. Olken finds that women in his micro data tend to report less corruption. Since I have the World Bank's Enterprise Surveys data to hand I decided to have a look and see if this was evident on the macro level. This first graph shows a fairly strong correlation between the percentage of firms with a female top manager and the percent of firms that report that corruption is a major constraint.
Of course there could just be something different about countries that have firms that have top managers who are women. As a rough comparison, the next two graphs plot country averages of female ownership and female employment in the firm at any level against corruption. The managers are the ones likely to answer the surveys and countries that have higher female management are also likely to have higher female ownership and women in the workforce in general. There seems to be no relationship with ownership and a less pronounced one with female employment. If this finding holds up to some brute force IV macroeconometrics (which I will probably do if anyone thinks this is interesting besides me), it might have some implications for macro work on corruption.