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The Reflexive Properties of Corporate Governance Codes: The Reception of the 'Comply or Explain' Approach in Slovenia


  • Nina Cankar
  • Simon Deakin
  • Marko Simoneti


The Slovenian Corporate Governance Code for Public Joint-Stock Companies was adopted in March 2004. Using a systems-theoretical approach, we examine the extent to which the implementation of the Code has resulted in the kinds of 'reflexive' learning processes which the 'comply or explain' approach aims to bring about. The adoption of the Code has already had an impact on the wider legal system, triggering certain changes in the body of core company law, and assisting the process of adjustment to EU-level norms. On the whole, companies' implementation strategies are strikingly similar both in terms of the contents of deviations as well as in the type of disclosure and explanations for deviations. At the same time, the quality of disclosures is low, with effective comply-or-explain declarations representing only a small minority of disclosures. On this basis, the Code has been more effective, to date, in legitimating Slovenia's adjustment to transnational norms and standards, than in stimulating institutional learning.

Suggested Citation

  • Nina Cankar & Simon Deakin & Marko Simoneti, 2008. "The Reflexive Properties of Corporate Governance Codes: The Reception of the 'Comply or Explain' Approach in Slovenia," Working Papers wp371, Centre for Business Research, University of Cambridge.
  • Handle: RePEc:cbr:cbrwps:wp371
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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Katharina Pistor, 2000. "Patterns of legal change: shareholder and creditor rights in transition economies," Working Papers 49, European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, Office of the Chief Economist.
    2. Katharina Pistor & Martin Raiser & Stanislaw Gelfer, 2000. "Law and Finance in Transition Economies," The Economics of Transition, The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, vol. 8(2), pages 325-368, July.
    3. Berkowitz, Daniel & Pistor, Katharina & Richard, Jean-Francois, 2003. "Economic development, legality, and the transplant effect," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 47(1), pages 165-195, February.
    4. Marko Simoneti & Aleksandra Gregoric, 2004. "Managerial ownership and corporate performance in Slovenian post-privatisation period," European Journal of Comparative Economics, Cattaneo University (LIUC), vol. 1(2), pages 217-241, December.
    5. Erik BERGLÖF & Ernst-Ludwig VON THADDEN, 1999. "The Changing Corporate Governance Paradigm : Implications for Transition and Developing Countries," Cahiers de Recherches Economiques du Département d'Econométrie et d'Economie politique (DEEP) 9912, Université de Lausanne, Faculté des HEC, DEEP.
    6. Andrei Shleifer & Daniel Treisman, 2003. "A Normal Country," NBER Working Papers 10057, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    7. Amable, Bruno, 2003. "The Diversity of Modern Capitalism," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780199261147, June.
    8. Demsetz, Harold & Lehn, Kenneth, 1985. "The Structure of Corporate Ownership: Causes and Consequences," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 93(6), pages 1155-1177, December.
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    More about this item


    corporate governance; comply or explain; disclosure; reflexive law; EU law; transplants; Slovenia;

    JEL classification:

    • G34 - Financial Economics - - Corporate Finance and Governance - - - Mergers; Acquisitions; Restructuring; Corporate Governance
    • G38 - Financial Economics - - Corporate Finance and Governance - - - Government Policy and Regulation
    • K22 - Law and Economics - - Regulation and Business Law - - - Business and Securities Law

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