New Ways in Corporate Governance: European Experiments with Labor Representation on Corporate Boards

Corporate governance has been discussed in Europe for over 150 years. Indeed, in the 1840’s, when the first Corporation Act was enacted in Prussia, three troubling features of the corporate organization form had already been discerned: (I) the vulnerability of small investors who lacked the influence and sophistication to. control the corporation; (2) the risk to creditors and the public created by the limited liability of the corporation, especially when combined with inadequate funds and poorly controlled management; and (3) the power that big corporations could amass economically, by monopolizing markets, and politically, by exerting influence on public opinion and government.