Learning from the Swiss Corporate Governance Exception

Forthcoming on Kyklos

19 Pages Posted: 11 Jul 2016

See all articles by Massimiliano Vatiero

Massimiliano Vatiero

University of Trento; Università della Svizzera italiana

Date Written: July 11, 2016


The Swiss economy represents an exception to the legal origin theory (e.g., Roe (2006)). Although Switzerland is a country belonging to the civil law family, many of its public companies have diffused corporate ownership, as do those in common law countries. This paper maintains that the Swiss exception relies on the complementarity between corporate ownership and policies addressing employment protection and innovation. The Swiss case presents two lessons: first, the current corporate governance is the result of a long and composite path in which politics plays a pivotal role; second, the institutional differences and similarities across countries, which one would try to explain along with the legal origin theory, can derive diversely from additional politics-based accounts, such as those referring to policies on employment protection and innovation.

Keywords: Corporate governance and ownership, innovation, employment protection, institutional complementarity, Swiss economy

JEL Classification: G30, J50, 016, P16

Suggested Citation

Vatiero, Massimiliano, Learning from the Swiss Corporate Governance Exception (July 11, 2016). Forthcoming on Kyklos, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2807990

Massimiliano Vatiero (Contact Author)

University of Trento ( email )

Via Inama, 5
Trento, Trento 38122

Università della Svizzera italiana ( email )

Via Giuseppe Buffi, n. 13
Lugano, Ticino 6900

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