Sunwoo Hwang

I am an Assistant Professor of Finance at Korea University Business School (KUBS). My research interests lie in the areas of corporate finance, which include labor finance, entrepreneurial finance, and environment, social, and governance (ESG).

Email: sunwoo_hwang(at)

SSRN / Google Scholar / ResearchGate

Curriculum Vitae

I organize the KUBS' virtual finance seminar (link).

Working Papers

Contingent Employment and Innovation

  • Abstract: Using novel indirect employment data and a Supreme Court ruling against subcontracted employment, this paper shows that contingent employment of skilled labor reduces innovation. Innovation increases after establishments convert subcontracted workers into direct hires compared to the establishments that did not use subcontracted workers before the ruling. The finding is without a simultaneous increase in operating leverage, R&D, and capital intensity and conditional on compensation schemes that reward employees for their investment in firm-specific skills and long-term performance. New hires do not innovate more. New inventors, including former subcontracted workers, create more and better patents, yet only through collaboration with existing inventors, who also create more and better non-collaborative patents. Furthermore, a positive spillover follows that innovation-associated voluntary employee departure increases.

  • Featured in University of Cambridge Judge Business School's News & Insight (Link)

Mandating Women on Boards: Evidence from the United States with Anil Shivdasani and Elena Simintzi

  • Abstract: On September 30, 2018, California became the first U.S. state to set quotas for women directors on corporate boards. The law resulted in a decline in shareholder value for firms headquartered in California. This decline increases with the number of female directors required to be added under these quotas. We find evidence that supply-side constraints drive the announcement effects. The law expanded the supply of women in the director pool. Female directors appointed to meet the quotas are as skilled as male directors, but possess a less similar set of skills and are given fewer responsibilities on the board.

  • Featured in Harvard Law School's Forum on Corporate Governance and Financial Regulation (Link)

Revealed Board Non-Independence

  • Abstract: Decades of research on corporate boards have wrestled with the issue that board composition is endogenously determined by CEO and the board and therefore relays incomplete information about board independence. This paper establishes that there exist circumstances under which CEO reveals the private information she has made a board non-independent and that her decision constitutes perfect Bayesian equilibria. Furthermore, the paper shows that the revelation is followed by a sharp decline in firm valuation and board monitoring quality. The results are stronger for firms in a poor information environment. Tests based on sudden director deaths suggest the evidence is causal.

Shareholder- vs. Stakeholder-Initiated Corporate Social Responsibility

  • Abstract: Available upon request.


Does Diversification of Share Classes Increase Firm Value? with Sojung Kim and Woochan Kim, 2020, Asian Review of Financial Research

When Heirs Become Major Shareholders: Evidence on Pyramiding Financed by Related-Party Sales with Woochan Kim, 2016, Journal of Corporate Finance

Managerial Entrenchment of Anti-Takeover Devices: Quasi-Experimental Evidence from Korea with Woochan Kim, 2012, Pacific-Basin Finance Journal


  • Financial Management (undergraduate), Spring 2021, Fall 2021, Fall 2022 (scheduled)

  • Corporate Finance (undergraduate), Fall 2021, Fall 2022 (scheduled)

  • Corporate Finance I (Ph.D.), Fall 2023 (scheduled)


The Rise of the Special Purpose Acquisition Company (Link)