Continuity and Change in Italian Corporate Governance: The Institutional Stability of One Variety of Capitalism

University of Siena Department of Economics Working Paper No. 366

36 Pages Posted: 29 Jan 2003

See all articles by Ugo Pagano

Ugo Pagano

University of Siena - Department of Economics

Sandro Trento

Bank of Italy

Date Written: September 2002

Abstract

For a long time family capitalism has been considered to be one of the distinguishing characteristics of the Italian economy. In Italy also large business organizations rely very often on this form of corporate governance. This paper examines both the actual institutional shocks and the missed opportunity for institutional shocks that have diversified the Italian economy from the other advanced capitalist economies. We maintain that, in the midst of the numerous changes that have characterized the last ten years, the strong presence of families in the governance of large enterprises has been an important aspect of systemic continuity. Despite the intentions of the reformers, the Italian model of family capitalism has been even purified to the point that it has come to approach a sort of Weberian ideal-type. Indeed, the role of other spurious (but, perhaps, complementary) institutions has been dramatically reduced with the eclipse of the power of Mediobanca and the privatization of the State sector while no serious challenge has threatened the dominance of family capitalism.

JEL Classification: N2, O1, P1, P5

Suggested Citation

Pagano, Ugo and Trento, Sandro, Continuity and Change in Italian Corporate Governance: The Institutional Stability of One Variety of Capitalism (September 2002). University of Siena Department of Economics Working Paper No. 366, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=366161 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.366161

Ugo Pagano (Contact Author)

University of Siena - Department of Economics ( email )

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Sandro Trento

Bank of Italy

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Italy

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