The Importance of Shareholder Activism: The Case of Say-on-Pay

Konstantionos Stathopoulos, Georgios Voulgaris

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

50 Citations (Scopus)


Manuscript Type: Review Research Question/Issue: This study focuses on the role of Say-on-Pay as a mechanism that aims to promote the efficiency of corporate governance by providing an additional channel for the expression of shareholder "voice." Initially introduced in the UK, Say-on-Pay has subsequently been adopted in a large number of countries and it has recently received significant attention from regulators, media, and the general public. The purpose of this study is to review prior literature related to Say-on-Pay and its impact on firm value and corporate decision making. Research Findings/Insights: Our study highlights the interdisciplinary nature of research on Say-on-Pay. We also shed light on conceptual gaps and empirical discrepancies in prior studies, indicating that many questions linked to Say-on-Pay and its importance for the executive pay-setting process remain largely unanswered. Theoretical/Academic Implications: At a theoretical level, we highlight potential areas for development of the existing theoretical framework for Say-on-Pay, which is at present rather limited and primarily influenced by agency theory. At an empirical level, we propose a substantial number of avenues for fruitful future research on this topic. Practitioner/Policy Implications: In the light of recent proposals for extending the role of Say-on-Pay within the corporate governance framework, our findings are particularly relevant to regulators. More thought is needed about changing its nature from advisory to binding, as the degree of its effectiveness and the dynamics of the voting process are still unclear. Our study could also be informative for the media and the general public, especially given the increasing attention afforded to Say-on-Pay.
Original languageEnglish
Peer-reviewed scientific journalCorporate Governance: An International Review
Issue number3
Pages (from-to)359-370
Number of pages12
Publication statusPublished - 2016
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article - refereed


  • 512 Business and Management


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