Footnotes (270)



Reconceptualizing the Theory of the Firm – From Nature to Function

Martin Petrin

University College London - Faculty of Laws

October 26, 2013

118 Penn State Law Review 1 (2013)

What is the “firm”? This Article revisits and explores the theory of the firm and corporate personhood and shows how the century old discourse in this area still firmly shapes how scholars, judges, and legislatures treat legal entities in corporate law, constitutional law, tort law, and criminal law, causing unnecessary complications and flawed outcomes.

Traditionally, the firm is characterized as either a real entity, a fiction, or an aggregate. Conversely, the Article proposes a novel answer to the perennial question as to how to conceptualize the firm. The new approach refocuses the debate away from the nature of the firm and contends that explanations of the firm should focus on its economic and social function, purpose, and effects. It also argues that compared to current approaches, a purely functional approach, as developed in more detail in the Article, provides a more useful analytical framework to ascertain what rights and duties corporations and other legal entities should have.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 53

Keywords: Theory of the Firm, Legal Entity, Real Entity, Fiction Theory, Aggregate Theory, Nexus of Contracts, First Amendment, Corporate Rights

JEL Classification: K00, K13, K14, K22

Open PDF in Browser Download This Paper

Date posted: March 1, 2013 ; Last revised: November 25, 2013

Suggested Citation

Petrin, Martin, Reconceptualizing the Theory of the Firm – From Nature to Function (October 26, 2013). 118 Penn State Law Review 1 (2013). Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=2225447 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2225447

Contact Information

Martin Petrin (Contact Author)
University College London - Faculty of Laws ( email )
London WC1E OEG
United Kingdom
Feedback to SSRN

Paper statistics
Abstract Views: 612
Downloads: 146
Download Rank: 136,461
Footnotes:  270

© 2015 Social Science Electronic Publishing, Inc. All Rights Reserved.  FAQ   Terms of Use   Privacy Policy   Copyright   Contact Us
This page was processed by apollo7 in 0.297 seconds