Charles T. Tackney
“Where would you like to work and why?”
Legal ecology enterprise models for comparative study
with Charles T. Tackney, Asia Research Centre
The modern enterprise is everywhere recognized as an independent, enduring, legal person or entity. Yet, management education fails in fundamental aspects of its mission if the internal authority, information and resource prerogatives in the firm are presented as univocal - everywhere the same. A comparative legal ecology model, derived from industrial relations and taught in a Scandinavian business school, is introduced as a pedagogic tool to manifest these parameters, which structure the firm and come from a firm’s national origins. Model parameters include employment security, labor unions and the degree of employee participation permitting (if any); a schematic is offered for the United States of America, Germany, Japan, Denmark, and the People’s Republic of China - this last on a provisional basis. The models can account for the legal extent and nature of managerial prerogative, job security, and degree of information and resource transparency of any enterprise. The legal ecology of an enterprise can facilitate analysis of external firm behavior and performance domestically, in other national markets, or the international business environment. Understanding these legal ecology models serves as a complement and aid to study of the modern enterprise in reference to distinctions between national political economies. The employee participation parameter offers theoretical grounds for hypothesis testing of enterprise differences in orientation to short-term profits, emphasis on market share and other corporate strategies. The models appear to account for variance in the equitable distribution of enterprise gains – particularly the high executive compensation levels that persist almost exclusively in U.S. enterprises.
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