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date: 18 March 2019

Abstract and Keywords

The majority of Japanese companies have taken what they regard as significant steps in the direction of accountability. In Japan, however, there is a different conception of the role of the board, the function of corporate governance, and the purpose of the corporation. This chapter argues that significant changes in these enduring Japanese corporate values and practices can only be accomplished if a more convincing theory and model of the corporation is proposed. In important respects, the contemporary evolution of corporate governance in Japan reflects the fundamental dilemmas inherent in defining corporate purpose that were first recognized by Berle and Means. The negotiation of the contemporary corporate community, purpose, and strategy in Japan will be of relevance to the definition of the distinctive orientations of Asian corporations.

Keywords: Japanese corporation, evolution, accountability, purpose of corporation, values, distinctiveness

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