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Inter-regional corporate ownership and regional autonomy: the case of Switzerland



By using a unique database on the ownership relations of Swiss firms, this article proposes a study of specific regional characteristics in that it reveals the way in which ownership is structured. The paper clearly highlights the different ways that regions behave regarding their involvement in these ownership structures, on a national and international level. The types of behaviour can be associated with the various economic specialisations of Switzerland’s regions. Firstly, it appears that the most frequent ownership links occur among firms within the same Regional Production System. It is then noted that the links between the Swiss regions are far less numerous than international links. The international links, by their number and their distribution throughout Switzerland, constitute the main source of discrimination between the regions. The financial region of Zurich masters this ownership issue most competently. It is the most autonomous region in that it is able to maintain control over its economy, to become highly involved in other spaces, and attract the most investments. It would appear that the regions that are the best integrated within the network are those that have been best able to take advantage of the evolution of the Swiss financial system. The low density of the links between the various Swiss regions suggests that these regions organise their relations on scales that are different to that of the nation. This clearly raises questions regarding the policies based on the principle that the growth of the main centres affects the rest of the country positively.

Suggested Citation

  • Olivier Crevoisier & Frédéric Quiquerez, 2005. "Inter-regional corporate ownership and regional autonomy: the case of Switzerland," GRET Publications and Working Papers 11-05, GRET Group of Research in Territorial Economy, University of Neuchâtel.
  • Handle: RePEc:nct:wpaper:11-05

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Frank Barry & Holger Gorg & Andrew Mcdowell, 2003. "Outward FDI and the Investment Development Path of a Late-industrializing Economy: Evidence from Ireland," Regional Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 37(4), pages 341-349.
    2. Marco Bellandi, 2001. "Local development and embedded large firms," Entrepreneurship & Regional Development, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 13(3), pages 189-210, July.
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    Cited by:

    1. Federico Podestà, 2017. "The economic impact of the Friuli-Venezia Giulia autonomy: a synthetic control analysis of asymmetric Italian federalism," The Annals of Regional Science, Springer;Western Regional Science Association, vol. 58(1), pages 21-37, January.
    2. José Corpataux & Olivier Crevoisier & Thierry Theurillat, 2009. "The Expansion of the Finance Industry and Its Impact on the Economy: A Territorial Approach Based on Swiss Pension Funds," Economic Geography, Clark University, vol. 85(3), pages 313-334, July.

    More about this item


    Economic specialisation; Ownership; Regions; Firms; Switzerland;

    JEL classification:

    • G34 - Financial Economics - - Corporate Finance and Governance - - - Mergers; Acquisitions; Restructuring; Corporate Governance
    • L22 - Industrial Organization - - Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior - - - Firm Organization and Market Structure
    • O16 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Financial Markets; Saving and Capital Investment; Corporate Finance and Governance
    • R12 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - General Regional Economics - - - Size and Spatial Distributions of Regional Economic Activity; Interregional Trade (economic geography)


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