School of Management,Xiamen University
As an important and basic resource of social production and civil life, water plays a crucial role in constructing national ecological civilization and realizing healthy economic development. Based on the utilization efficiency of water resources and water pollution of Chinese listed firms during 2007-2017, this study examines the impact of the CEO's drought experience in the childhood on water protection performance. The findings show that the CEO's drought experience in the childhood (5-15 years old) is significantly positively associated with water protection performance, implying that the drought experience and risk awareness towards water imprint the CEO's behavior and improve water protection performance. In addition, CEOs' current perception of water shortage strengthens the positive effect of the CEO's drought experience in the childhood on water protection performance. Above results are still valid after a series of robustness tests and using the change model to address the potential endogeneity. Furthermore, results in additional tests show that the pollution control department has an intermediary effect between CEOs’ childhood drought experience and corporate water protection performance, the implementation of the Environmental Protection Law strengthens the positive effect of the CEO's drought experience in the childhood on water protection performance, and the positive relation between CEOs’ childhood drought experience and corporate water protection performance is more pronounced for firms in manufacturing and polluting industries.