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Labour regulation, corporate governance and varieties of capitalism

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  • Mirella Damiani
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    Abstract

    The literature aimed at exploring labor regulation and cross-country comparisons has left partly unexplored two major points: the first is the influence of employees within managerial processes, through the channel of employee representation at firm level. The second point concerns potential complementarities or substitutions between patterns of ownership or shareholder protection and labour regulation. The paper offers a critical overview of some selected studies that have started at filling these gaps by considering labour institutions for their influence on the ‘balance’ of power inside the firm, between owners, management, and employees. Firstly, it examines the literature which gives a central importance to the effects of legal origins on labour regulation and labour market outcomes. Secondly, it reviews the studies which focus on informal rules and de-facto practices and favour a stakeholder approach. A particular concern is paid to the overall consequences of the different institutional setups in the perspective of the “varieties of capitalism”, in which systems of labour regulation exert their function by strategical interactions with other institutions. Finally, it presents recent theoretical and empirical studies centring on employee investments in firm-specific human capital and on institutional devices which have the effect of tying the fortunes of the employee together with those of the firm. In the varieties of capitalism characterised by general skills and patterns of radical innovation, it is emphasized the internal governance exerted by ‘critical employees’. In economies with firm and industry specific skills, cooperation of employees with management in more shareholder value oriented firm (‘negotiated shareholder system’) are the more successful roads.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by Università di Perugia, Dipartimento Economia, Finanza e Statistica in its series Quaderni del Dipartimento di Economia, Finanza e Statistica with number 76/2010.

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    Length: 47 pages
    Date of creation: 01 Sep 2010
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    Handle: RePEc:pia:wpaper:76/2010

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    Keywords: Stakeholders; Corporate Governance; Varieties of Capitalism.;

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    References

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