Business Enterprises and Entrepreneurship
Edited by Geoffrey Jones and Andrea Lluch
Chapter 2: Corporate governance and ownership in Chile, 1854–2012
The analysis of corporate governance practices and ownership schemes concerns both academics and public officials. The impact of these on financial development and economic growth has garnered increasing attention ever since the Asian financial crisis in the late 1990s and US corporate scandals in the early 2000s. Corporate governance issues have also been included in the debate over causes underlying the 2008 financial crisis. Existing differences among corporate governance practices across different countries have also captured researchers’ interest. A number of studies show that dispersed ownership – a common structure in the United States and the United Kingdom – is less frequent in the rest of the world where equity concentration prevails. However, given that these studies are based on contemporary data, they fail to explain the origins of such differences. This has now encouraged a historical approach to the study of corporate governance. This chapter contributes to this literature by providing a long-term perspective on the changes in ownership, corporate governance and their related legal frameworks in Chile since the mid-nineteenth century.
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