the firm law

Systemic Risk Centre Event

Date: 16-17th June 2022   Time: 1.5 day event
Venue: Conference room, 1.06, Marshall Building, LSE
Organisers: Eva Micheler (SRC/LSE), David Gindis (University of Hertfordshire)
Speakers: Vicky Barnes (Max Planck), Sandrine Blanc (INSEEC Grande Ecole), Rutger Claassen (Utrecht), Simon Deakin (Cambridge), Isabelle Ferreras (Louvain), Joshua Getzler (Oxford), David Gindis (Hertfordshire), Jonathan Hardman (Edinburgh), Stephan Leixenring (WU Vienna), Samuel Mansell (St Andrews), Ewan McGaughey (KCL), Eva Micheler (SRC/LSE), Christopher Napier (Royal Holloway), Eric Orts (Wharton), Sarah Paterson (LSE), Alexander Pepper (LSE), Alexander Styhre (Gothenburg), Carien van Mourik (OU)

For some time the nexus of contract model of the firm and agency theory have operated as the dominant theoretical approach in law, economics and other social sciences. Following the 2008 financial crisis this approach has received substantial and sustained criticism. Despite this critique no alternative positive or normative theory of the firm has yet taken hold.

The aim of this conference is to fill this gap and to articulate an institutional theory of the firm. This theory (a) emphasizes the real economic enterprise underlying the legal form supplied by law, (b) highlights that and how the enterprise is constituted by law, (c) examines the relative roles of governance mechanisms, organizational routines, codes of practice, social norms and shared beliefs, in a manner that aims to (d) shine a light on current and future reform proposals.

The conference will conclude with an evening lecture by Katharina Pistor (Columbia, US – law) entitled "Financializing the non-financial firm". For details of the lecture click here or scroll down to the bottom of this page.

Both events are co-sponsored by the Systemic Risk Centre and the Law and Financial Markets Project.



Below are a few photos from the event. For a wider selection of images, please visit our Flickr page.

Eva Conference June 2022 - 1
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To access the slides for each presentation, click the title of the talk.

* presenting author

Day 1

Thursday, 16th June 2022


Registration and refreshments

Welcome address

Session 1

Institutional theory in company law
Eva Micheler (LSE, UK - law)

A legally-grounded real entity view of the firm
David Gindis (Hertfordshire, UK - economics)

The Corporation: A Neo-Realist Account
Simon Deakin (Cambridge, UK – law)

Day 2

Friday, 17th June 2022

Registration and refreshments

Session 3

Property rights, markets, and externalities in corporate external reporting theory and practice (video)
Carien van Mourik (OU, UK – accounting)

How corporate reporting underpins a financial conception of the firm
Christopher Napier (Royal Holloway, UK – accounting)

CLO incentives and financial distress: The case for regulating covenant-life loans
Sarah Paterson (LSE, UK – law)


Session 4

Who speaks for the corporation? A Hobbesian theory of managerial authority
Samuel Mansell (St Andrews, UK – business ethics)

Common knowledge and group minds
Joshua Getzler (Oxford, UK – legal history)

Justice Inc.
Sandrine Blanc* (INSEEC Grande Ecole, France – business ethics)
Tim Meijers (Leiden, Netherlands – philosophy)


Session 5

Communicating purpose: The English joint stock bank in law and society
Vicky Barnes* (Max Planck, Germany – legal history)
Lucy Newton (Reading, UK – business history)

Toward a theory of plural business purposes
Eric Orts (Wharton, US – law)

Corporate Purpose: An Institutional Perspective
Stephan Leixenring (WU Vienna, Austria – management)


Session 6

The multi-capital corporation: in or beyond capitalism?
Rutger Claassen* (Utrecht, Netherlands – political theory)
Tully Rector (Utrecht, Netherlands – political theory)

An institutional approach to executive compensation: FTSE100 CEO pay 1980-2020
Alexander Pepper (LSE, UK – management)

Market concentration and weaker antitrust enforcement: A legal-institutional theory view of economic welfare consequences
Alexander Styhre (Gothenburg, Sweden – management)

Closing remarks