This paper investigates the effectiveness of founder CEOs on firm innovation. We examine our research question using the number of patent citations as a proxy for firm innovation and a novel dataset of founder CEOs in S&P 1,500 firms over a 15-year period from 1994 to 2008. Our main results show that a founder CEO is associated with an increase in citations, suggesting that founder CEOs are more effective in stimulating innovation compared to professional CEOs. Overall, these findings support the argument that a founder CEO plays an important role in facilitating firm innovation through more risk-taking.
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