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date: 26 May 2020

Abstract and Keywords

This article begins by outlining the historical evolution of corporate-governance systems in five major countries: the United States, Britain, Germany, France, and Japan. It then examines the major causal arguments advanced to account for diachronic variations within the country cases as well as synchronic variations between them. The article also highlights some empirically significant phenomena obscured by the framework of the current debate and suggests some ways in which their reintegration may provide greater purchase on the problems of transformation and recomposition thrown up by the debate itself. It discusses some insights of an older historical literature on corporate governance. Finally, the article concludes that the entire contemporary debate could benefit from more careful archival scholarship on the development of corporate governance regimes across the major countries.

Keywords: corporate governance, empirically significant phenomena, transformation, recomposition, historical literature

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