After Shareholder Value? Corporate Governance Regulation, the Crisis and Organized Labour at the European Level
In the context of the financial and economic crisis, corporate governance has been identified as ‘one of the most important failures of the present crisis’ by an EU expert group (De Larosiere 2009: 29). In the decade preceding the crisis, EU corporate governance regulation has increasingly become neoliberal both in content - with an exclusive focus on shareholder value - as well as form, with market-based regulatory mechanisms such as disclosure and voluntary compliance instead of mandatory legislation. Corporate governance arrangements such as excessive performance-related remuneration have led to perverse incentives for risk-taking, and increasingly independent, and externalized corporate oversight bodies lacked sufficient information and willingness to hold managers and investors accountable. Clearly, the pathologies of shareholder value have become even more apparent. In a climate of widespread critique of neoliberal policies, as well as the neoclassical models on which shareholder value rests, could the crisis indeed be the catalyst through which shareholder value as prime objective for corporate control can be overcome?
KeywordsCorporate Governance Trade Union European Level Corporate Control Social Dialogue
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