- international corporate law •
- international corporate governance •
- comparative corporate governance •
- legal implants
Comparative corporate governance has focused either on prevailing differences across legal systems, or on spontaneous legal transplants of foreign institutions in response to global competition. This essay argues that corporate law today is not only a product of the invisible hand of the market, but also of the soft (and not-so-soft) hands of international organizations and standard setters.
The rise of ICL responds to interjurisdictional externalities and nationalist bias of domestic regimes that have been largely neglected by prevailing theories, which failed to predict and notice the strong push for international coordination and standard setting in the field. ICL has also gone beyond merely prescribing an Anglo-Saxon model of corporate governance to also promote legal innovations that place the United States in the receiving end of international pressure. Legal implants from ICL, rather than legal transplants from a foreign jurisdiction, are an increasingly relevant force behind corporate governance change. While ICL has been influential, its efficacy and normative vision face challenges. The time has come to move beyond an exclusively comparative focus to also scrutinize the potential and limits of corporate lawmaking at the international level.