From Corporatism to Shareholder Value
The market structures prevailing in Germany, France, or Japan since World War II have developed in one way or another along corporatist or statist lines. In Germany and France, financial laws have been revised and economic institutions have undergone substantial restructuring. Corporatist regulations on the labor and financial markets are being dismantled and replaced by a regime of market regulation. The social sciences have developed a string of theories to explain institutional changes that were observed in the economic system in recent decades, particularly the transition from corporatism to shareholder value capitalism. Among these are the transaction cost theories (lock-in effects) and theories on cultural evolution. These concepts are summarized in the present chapter, and a number of examples are considered to demonstrate the changes which corporate networks, the ownership patterns of large enterprises, and financial markets have undergone in Germany and France over the past decade.
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