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Shareholder Interests, Human Capital Investment and Corporate Governance

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  • Roberts, John

    (Stanford U)

  • Van den Steen, Eric

Abstract

Corporations simultaneously claim that human capital is increasingly important to their success and that they seek to maximize shareholder value. This paper studies the relationship between these two developments. We show that the pursuit of shareholder interests may require ceding a role in corporate governance to employees in order to motivate their investing in firm-specific human capital. Doing so becomes more attractive as these investments increase in importance. This result also bears on the debate about reforming European and Japanese governance systems in the direction of the American system, reducing employees' influence. In this context, we present a model on the optimal choice of governance systems, along ideas suggested by Holmstrom.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Stanford University, Graduate School of Business in its series Research Papers with number 1631.

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Date of creation: Apr 2000
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:ecl:stabus:1631

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  1. Hart, Oliver & Moore, John, 1990. "Property Rights and the Nature of the Firm," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 98(6), pages 1119-58, December.
  2. Grossman, Sanford J & Hart, Oliver D, 1986. "The Costs and Benefits of Ownership: A Theory of Vertical and Lateral Integration," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 94(4), pages 691-719, August.
  3. Oliver Hart & John Moore, 1998. "Cooperatives vs. Outside Ownership," NBER Working Papers 6421, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Andrei Shleifer & Robert W. Vishny, 1995. "A Survey of Corporate Governance," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 1741, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
  5. Milgrom, Paul & Roberts, John, 1994. "Complementarities and systems: Understanding japanese economic organization," Estudios Económicos, El Colegio de México, Centro de Estudios Económicos, vol. 9(1), pages 3-42.
  6. Oliver Hart & John Moore, 1998. "Cooperatives vs. outside ownership," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 19360, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
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Cited by:
  1. Mansur Lubabah Kwambo & Ahmad Bawa Abdul-Qadir, 2013. "Dispersed Equity Holding and Financial Performance of Banks in Nigeria," International Journal of Academic Research in Accounting, Finance and Management Sciences, Human Resource Management Academic Research Society, International Journal of Academic Research in Accounting, Finance and Management Sciences, vol. 3(1), pages 238-247, January.
  2. David Kelsey & Frank Milne, 2008. "Imperfect Competition and Corporate Governance," Journal of Public Economic Theory, Association for Public Economic Theory, vol. 10(6), pages 1115-1141, December.
  3. repec:hal:cepnwp:hal-00628647 is not listed on IDEAS
  4. Matthias Benz & Bruno S. Frey, . "Corporate Governance: What can we Learn from Public Governance?," IEW - Working Papers 166, Institute for Empirical Research in Economics - University of Zurich.
  5. Cécile Cézanne-Sintès, 2008. "Modern Corporate Changes: Reinstating the Link between the Nature, Boundaries and Governance of the Firm," Post-Print hal-00367732, HAL.
  6. Olivier Sautel & Cécile Cézanne-Sintès, 2007. "Firme intensive en capital humain et coordination : vers une redéfinition du rapport entre intégration et dé-intégration," Post-Print hal-00331454, HAL.
  7. Subramanian Rangan & Metin Sengul, 2009. "Information technology and transnational integration: Theory and evidence on the evolution of the modern multinational enterprise," Journal of International Business Studies, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 40(9), pages 1496-1514, December.
  8. Heiwai Tang, 2010. "Labor Market Institutions, Firm-specific Skills, and Trade Patterns," Development Working Papers 301, Centro Studi Luca d\'Agliano, University of Milano.
  9. Matthias Benz & Bruno S. Frey, 2006. "Towards a Constitutional Theory of Corporate Governance," IEW - Working Papers 304, Institute for Empirical Research in Economics - University of Zurich.
  10. repec:hal:wpaper:hal-00628647 is not listed on IDEAS

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